The realtor Code of Ethics Quadrennial Member Education Program Copyright, 2000 National Association of realtors


What was Lucy's obligation to Sam?



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What was Lucy's obligation to Sam?

Lucy should have communicated the change to the offer of compensation before Sam produced the offer to purchase. If this were an MLS listing, Lucy could have changed the offer of compensation in MLS before Sam produced the offer to purchase.


If Sam files an arbitration claim against Lucy for the 1% difference, do you think Sam is entitled to be paid the additional 1%?

The arbitration panel will likely rule in Sam's favor if Sam can prove that the offer of compensation in MLS was X% on the day the offer to purchase was produced. To prove the offer of compensation was X%, Sam should print a copy of the MLS data sheet on the day the offer to purchase was produced.


Page 12

III. Article 3


A. Cooperate with other brokers except when cooperation is not in the client's best interest.

B. "Cooperation" does not automatically include compensation.


Case Study

Lucy was a listing broker who published an offer of cooperation and compensation in MLS for one of her listings (list price of $100,000). The offer of compensation to MLS participants was for X%. Sam, saw the MLS listing, showed the property and wrote an offer on the property for Barney Buyer. When Sam delivered the offer to Lucy, Lucy said, "Oh, by the way, I had to reduce my commission the other day to keep the seller happy so I can only pay Y% co-op fee now." (Y% was 1% less than X%.) Sam is upset.

What Articles and/or Standards of Practice apply to this case?

Is Lucy in violation of the Code?

What was Lucy's obligation to Sam?

If Sam files an arbitration claim against Lucy for the 1% difference, do you think Sam is entitled to be paid the additional 1%?




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