Understanding Whom Agents Represent in Maryland is getting an update in October 2016, and buyers especially need to understand the changes.
In 2010, I wrote about Understanding Whom Agents Represent in Maryland, and discussed “Presumed Buyer Agency.” As of October 1, 2016, PRESUMED BUYER AGENCY WILL NO LONGER EXIST IN MARYLAND.
In the past, “presumed buyer agency” happened when an agent would show a buyer homes NOT listed with the agent’s company.
NOW, as of October 1, 2016, IF THE COMPANY THE HOME IS LISTED WITH IS ANOTHER BROKERAGE THAN THE ONE WITH WITH AN AGENT HAS THEIR LICENSE HUNG, UNLESS A BUYER AGENCY AGREEMENT IS SIGNED, AN AGENT SHOWING THE HOME IS DEEMED TO REPRESENT THE SELLER OF THE HOME, again, UNLESS A BUYER AGENCY AGREEMENT IS IN PLACE.
This category is called a SUBAGENT.
According to the NEW Understanding Whom Real Estate Agents Represent in Maryland 10/16 Document, A subagent:
Subagent: A Subagent means a licensed real estate broker, licensed associate real estate broker, or licensed real
estate salesperson who is not affiliated with or acting as the listing real estate broker for a property, is not a buyer’s agent, has an agency relationship with the seller , and assists a prospective buyer in the acquisition of real estate for sale in a non-agency capacity. The subagent works for a real estate company different from the company for which the seller’s agent works. The subagent can assist a buyer in purchasing a property, but his or her duty of loyalty is only to the seller .
If the property a buyer is viewing with an agent who is licensed with the same company as the listing agent, then the agent also represents the seller, but as a SELLER’S AGENT, unless a buyer’s agency agreement is signed AND Consent Dual Agency Agreement (10/16) is signed.
A Seller’s Agent, according to the new form:
Seller’s Agent: A seller’s agent works for the real estate company that lists and markets the property for the sellers and exclusively represents the sellers. A Seller’s agent may assist the buyer in purchasing the property, but his or her duty of loyalty is only to the seller.
What buyers need to understand is that UNLESS YOU HAVE A WRITTEN BUYER AGENCY AGREEMENT WITH A LICENSED REAL ESTATE AGENT, and any other forms as needed depending on the property, any real estate agent in the State of Maryland, as of October 1, 2016, is deemed to represent the seller.
Please make sure to understand agency with your real estate agent before viewing homes.
*Sentences in bold are my way to bring attention to those sentences. They may not be in bold in the paperwork as provided by the State of Maryland.*
**ALSO, PLEASE NOTE: I AM NOT AN ATTORNEY. No information on this website or this post should be taken as legal advice. I CANNOT GIVE LEGAL ADVICE.**
***Please understand that Contract Forms and Agency Laws may change over time. This post is from 2016, with the most current forms at the time from the Maryland Association of REALTORS(R).***