Client vs. customer: Semantics or a really big deal?

By
Real Estate Agent with The Corcoran Group Real Estate Co.

 

Client vs. Customer: Semantics or a really big deal?

 

It has become one of my favorite sayings - “In real estate, representation is everything.

 

I find that to be especially true in this current buyer’s market. So many buyers are missing out on great opportunities because they are unaware that they are entitled to a very special kind of representation.  They instead wind up working with an agent who is acting in the best interest of the seller.

 

In my most recent article in Dan’s HamptonsAsk the Expert” column, I covered a few basics on how a buyer can tell who the agent represents and why that’s important.

 

Hopefully, the tables below will clarify any confusion as to the two very different relationships when it comes to buyers working with real estate agents.

 

Please don’t be thrown off by the word customer. People automatically associate that word with someone who is purchasing something - thereby relating it to the buying side of real estate.  Well, that’s not necessarily so, as a customer can be a seller as well.  In real estate jargon, the definition of customer is “the third party with whom the agent deals on behalf of the principal (client).  Sounds pretty unappealing, doesn’t it?

 

The Hamptons Edge Real Estate

 

Your Hamptons Exclusive Buyer’s Agent - Where all our Buyers are Clients

 

CUSTOMER

              RESPONSIBILITY

HONESTY

Ensure all laws and regulations pertaining to the transaction are obeyed

ACCOUNTING

Safeguard money and property held on behalf of the customer

REASONABLE SKILL

Provide customer with standards of practice and competence that are reasonably expected

DISCLOSURE (Material Fact and Agency)

Disclose material facts about a property.  Disclose agency relationship.  Explain the difference between a customer and client relationship in a timely fashion SO THAT A CUSTOMER CAN PROTECT THEIR OWN INTERESTS

 

 

CLIENT

                DUTY

FULL

DISCLOSURE

Disclose all info that might affect the clients decision

LOYALTY

Do not conduct the client's business in such a way to benefit the customer or any other party to the detriment of the client’s interest

CONFIDENTIALITY

Do not divulge any confidential  information about the client told or learned by the agent within the agency relationship

REASONABLE CARE AND DILIGENCE

Protect the client from foreseeable risks or harm and recommend the client obtain expert advice or assistance when needs are outside the scope of the agents expertise

OBEDIENCE

Act subject to the client’s continuous control (following all lawful instructions)

ACCOUNTING

Safeguard money and property held on behalf of client

 

 

 

Posted by

William "Bill" Carroll
Principal Broker
Hamptons Edge Real Estate Co.

Bill@Hereli.com
631-241-8168

 

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Tags:
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Rainmaker
1,093,316
Laura Allen, Lake Tahoe - Truckee Real Estate for Sale www.TahoeLauraLuxuryHomes.com
Coldwell Banker, Tahoe City, CA (530) 414-1260 - Tahoe City, CA
Tahoe Real Estate Agent Helping Buyers and Sellers

Bill - great post.  I think there is a lot of confusion between the two and often the public assumes the client and consumer are the same thing.  Nicely done on identifying the difference between the two. 

Oct 27, 2011 08:57 AM #1
Rainmaker
215,903
Bill Carroll
The Corcoran Group Real Estate Co. - Westhampton, NY
IN REAL ESTATE, REPRESENTATION IS EVERYTHING

Thanks Laura

Oct 27, 2011 09:58 AM #2
Rainmaker
224,121
Laurie Mindnich
Centennial, CO

Terrific explanation, and congrats on Hampton One- love the H1!

Oct 27, 2011 10:26 AM #3
Rainmaker
215,903
Bill Carroll
The Corcoran Group Real Estate Co. - Westhampton, NY
IN REAL ESTATE, REPRESENTATION IS EVERYTHING

Thanks Laurie.

Oct 27, 2011 01:18 PM #4
Rainmaker
1,397,468
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

Here are the definitions from the Code:

Client:  someone “with whom the REALTOR® or a REALTOR’S® firm has an agency or legally recognized non-agency relationship.”
Customer:  “a party to a real estate transaction who receives information, services, or benefits but has no contractual relationship with the REALTOR® or the REALTOR’S® firm."

Sep 13, 2015 09:35 PM #5
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Rainmaker
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Bill Carroll

IN REAL ESTATE, REPRESENTATION IS EVERYTHING
client level service makes all the difference
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