This week we continue to examine agency as it is used under the new S.C. Code§ 40-57-5 et seq. (Law effective January 1, 2017).
Section 40-57-350(C) holds that at the time of first substantive contact with the consumer, it is presumed that a potential buyer or seller is to be a customer of the real estate brokerage and that the licensee will be acting as a transaction broker. Furthermore, it is presumed that the licensee will only be providing the services offered to a customer until the consumer signs an agency representation agreement.
Under the current statute §40-57-139(E) the potential buyer or seller is presumed to be a customer of the licensee and only customer services can be provided until the consumer requests representation. Furthermore, the current law holds that before ratification of a real property sales agreement, the licensee must represent either the buyer or seller in an agency capacity (client) in order to be compensated.
While the presumption of customer relationship remains the same, the big change in the law is that it is now presumed you are in transaction brokerage with the consumer until the consumer signs a written document becoming a client. This is important because you no longer have to represent a consumer as a client in order to be paid in the transaction. You can remain in transaction and customer relationship throughout the transaction. While in transaction brokerage you may not provide client services, which would include advising, advocating and counseling the consumer.
It is important to note that while it is presumed you are acting as a transaction broker this does not negate your requirement at the first practical opportunity to explain brokerage/agency. This is where South Carolina deviates from other states which do not require an explanation of agency/brokerage as long as the relationship remains as transaction brokerage.
Meet the People of Blair Cato: Shatarri Willis has worked in real estate for 14 years. She began her career as a REO Asset Manager at NetBank. Shay was born and raised in Columbia. She is a graduate of Keenan High School and Winthrop University where she was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She is very active in New Samaritan Baptist Church where her mother is the pastor. She enjoys spending time with her second grade son at the baseball field. Shay works as a new construction closer.
Photo by thetaxhaven