As a Realtor, it is important for me to be transparent and honest with my clients in every transaction. This transparency means that I have a professional duty to give my clients information that will help them to make appropriate choices. Full disclosure is not only the right thing to do, it's what I am legally bound to do if I want to maintain my real estate license in Maryland.
When clients work with Realtors, it is important for them to be transparent when it comes to their intentions, finances, and credit history. This level of transparency leads to greater communication. Greater communication allows the Realtor to effectively meet the needs of the client.
Recently, I have been working with renters with credit challenges. Although I love working with the rental community, I have come across my share of people who have not been as honest about their financial pictures as I would have liked them to be.
Within the past month, I have submitted at least four applications on behalf of clients who have been denied because the credit reports revealed details that were not disclosed during the pre-qualifying conversation.
Imagine my surprise when I received calls from property managers informing me that the application was declined due to severe credit blemishes that were not disclosed during the pre-qualifying interview.
Initially my response was shock. I couldn't believe that I had been led to believe things that were not true. Now, my response has gone from shock to frustration.
This frustration has very little to do with the loss of commission. It has everything to do with the fact that I want to help clients obtain a suitable property. When I am blind-sided by information that was not disclosed, I feel as if I was not given the tools to do my job.
If Realtors have a valid picture of a client's financial situation and credit history, they can contact the listing agent of the desired property to see if it is worth the client's time and application fee to apply for the property. There are ways for us to assist if we know the issues we are facing.
Realtors and clients are on the same team. If team members fail to confide in each other, then everyone loses. Not only does the Realtor not get compensated, but the client loses a Realtor because the client is perceived as being untrustworthy.
So, the next time your Realtor asks for a clear picture of your financial situation, rental history, or credit report, disclose everything. We are here to help. Besides, credit reports rarely lie. The truth will always be revealed.
After the smoke clears, you not have only lost a property. You will have lost a Realtor too.