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A Broker's Responsibility

William A. Greene

Broker, Kensington Realty

More often then not, the keyword in the real estate industry is "sell" rather than "represent". Far too many brokers and agents appear to have an undeclared mission statement that reflects "salesmanship" rather than "representation" of Buyer or Seller. The California Department of Real Estate unwittingly reinforces this by identifying the licensee as a "Broker" or a "Salesperson". A "Salesperson" should be more properly identified as a "Broker Associate" or "Broker Affiliate" to more properly identify the responsibility inherent in this role.

First and foremost, ethically and legally, a real estate agent should be continuously aware of his fiduciary responsibility to the client. "Fiduciary" simply means handling funds on behalf of another. Integral to that definition is the element of trust which is as much a responsibility, as it is a privilege. Real estate breeds the most litigation of any industry, a fact that could very easily be a thing of the past if more agents would faithfully execute their fiduciary responsibility to their clients. It would reduce litigation significantly.

There is an adage in this industry that says, "20% of all agents make 80% of all sales". Is this a measure of success? Perhaps, but a better measure of success would be one that measures character and responsible representation.

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