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mikeyork1234, Other/Just Looking in New York, NY

Buyer & Seller disclosure form

Asked by mikeyork1234, New York, NY Thu Nov 15, 2012

I am trying to understand how the NY buyer and seller disclosure form works. Please tell me if my understanding is correct based on a simple case with a buyer, a buyer's agent, a seller and a seller's agent. At the time they first meet the buyer's agent provide a form to the buyer who signes it to acknowledge receipt. Same thing on the other side, at the time they meet (the first time) the seller's agent provide a form to the seller who must sign it. Then once the buyer's agent makes an offer for his client he must submit a form to the seller's agent (stating the he represents the buyer) and that the seller's agent will forward to the seller for acknowledgment. When the seller's agent email back the buyer's agent he provides him a form stating that he represents the seller, which should be signed by the buyer. Is this correct?

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The NY State 443 disclosure form must be presented at first substantive contact with either a buyer or seller. In NY State we are all sellers agents unless otherwise specified in writing. A buyer is a customer before signing and becomes a client once they do. The state doesn't require agents to forward the form to another agent when making an offer anymore.

Originally the dual agency with advvanced consent had to be signed by both parties before even showing the property, not sure if they changed it recently. These forms don't have to be confusing but NY state is notorious for ridiculous procedures and paperwork. All the parties are really doing by signing is acknowledging they understand the types of representation and how they are being represented.

Brokers agency is the most ridiculous section and I've never known anyone to use it.

Christopher Pagli
Licensed Associate Broker
Accredited Buyer Representative
William Raveis Legends Realty Group
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
There is some confusion over these forms. They are for the buyers and sellers protection so that they know who represents them. In some cases the broker acts as a dual agent and works for both sides. (In some other states this is known as a transactional agent). Brokers are required to give the form to the client to disclose who they represent, however, the client is not required to sign it. If the client refuses to sign the broker is required to sign an affidavit and keep it with the deal sheet or contract of sale stateing when the form was given and that they refused to sign it.

Disclosure forms do not obligate the buyer or seller to stay with the agent. It says on the form "this is not a contract.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
Mike. The form you refer to is the NY State Agenct Disclosure Form. In essence this form simply states whom is being represented in the transaction by which broker/agent. As the listing broker works for and has a fiduciary responsibility to their client, the seller, A buyers broker would represent the interests of the buyer or customer. The form is NOT a contract and says as much in bold print.

No need for a buyers broker to "...submit a form to the seller's agent etc..." It is enough for the brokers to fax or attach in e-mail a copy of their Agency Disclosure to each other. There is no other standard form required by NY state for what you refer to in your last few sentences.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
Let's look at this from a buyers position and I will try to keep it pretty simple.

NYS requires that ALL agents disclose to you, the buyer, who they are representing in a real estate transaction. There are THREE ways in which that can be done as shown on the agency disclosure form which you SHOULD be asked to sign at the BEGINNING of your relationship with your agent.

The agent can represent you as a BUYERS ACCOUNT, therefore working in your best interest during your real estate experience. True buyer agents will usually take the time to elaborate either in writing and/ or in person as to the services they are going to provide and specify limitations, and there is no additional fee for this service but require an exclusive working relationship where you sign a Broker Exclusive Agreement. Any liability will remain with that of your agent and the agent's broker.

The agent can work for the buyer as a SELLERS ACCOUNT, that is, working in the best interest of the seller even if the agents does not personally know the seller. There is no special service provided by the agent other than treating you honestly and fairly. There is no exclusive working relationship with this representation, you are free to work with multiple agents. The seller is the principle and liable for the agent's conduct even if they don't know that agent. This sounds silly but that's exactly why option number three was introduced about 6 or 7 years ago.

The agent can work for you as a BROKERS AGENT, working again for the seller but eliminating the seller from any potential liability as mentioned in option 2 and leaving that liability just with your agent and your agent's brokers. This is extremely important and misunderstood or not understood at all by many agents. Really option two, should be done away with and I'm surprise it's still around.

DUAL AGENCY is a little bit more complicated and another another option, so really there's four but basically that's when your agent is representing you as a buyer's agent and also the listing agent for the home you want to sell and of course the listing agent must represent the seller. A little more variation on this option on the rules of dual agency but that's basically what you need to understand as a buyer. The agents will be representing both parties without disclosing confidential information of either the buyer or seller.

In a nut shell, agency boils down to representation and more importantly liability.

Hope that helps.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
Thanks for the helpful explanation. You just need to correct the places above where you typed ACCOUNT instead of AGENT.
Flag Sat Apr 2, 2016
I love how you gave so many different scenarios, this was so helpful! Thanks!
Flag Wed Nov 21, 2012
Thank you for your answers, it really helps!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
Buyers Agent form representing the Buyer

Buyers Agent form also can acknowledge advanced consent of dual agency with designated sales associates

Buyers Agent form for Dual Agency(if representing both sides)

Very few Sellers agents request my Buyers Agency form(company policy of some)

In my area of Rockland County as well as Orange, Sullivan & Ulster) that is the the basics.

Best of Luck, Allan
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
I am sorry if I misunderstand. I understood that you are a real estate agent confuse with the buyer& seller disclosure form.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
Hi Mikey.
Ask your broker to clarify for you the disclosure form. That form is only between you and the seller if you are representing the seller or between you and the buyer if you are representing the buyer.
When you make an offer in your buyer's name you are clearly representing the buyer. The listing agent is the agent who is representing the seller.
In case that both of you are from the same brokerage firm the is a situation of a duel agency and you are representing both the seller and the buyer. In that case the buyer and the seller need to be inform of a duel agency and sign the disclosure form.
Good luck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
Hi: No, not quite. The disclosure form is only utilized when there is substantive conversation regarding what you (either buyer or seller) are trying to do. This generally relates to financials and confidential information. The purpose of the disclosure is simply that, to make sure you know who the agent represents.

If you go to an open house, you don't need to sign it (in fact shouldn't if there isn't any substantive conversation as there is still some mis-use of the form for agents to claim you as their client...particularly in the boroughs). At an open house, the agent is representing the seller, unless you agree to dual agency.

Importantly, this is not a contract and even if you sign the form it does not mean that you are bound to the agent. Only if the agent has done work for you (made appointments, shown you property, taken you to open houses, provded a great deal of advice and/or in Manhattan put you on an open house schedule where you see apartments with out them). Agents who you met once at an open house in Manhattan cannot claim you as their client. You have the right to choose your agent at any time in the process.

Not all agencies require that they have the documentation from both sides, but the State does require that the person representing you has a signed copy, otherwise they can temporarily or permanently loose their license. For all closed deals, the agent must have copies. In fact, once substantive conversation occurs even for a rental, the form is required.

When the document first came out and there was a great deal of confusion about it (it is not a contract, it does not bind you to anything), I wrote a more detailed explanation here on Trulia on my section of the site. Feel free to look up the discussion or give me a call.
Kelly Killian
Vice President - Bond New York
cel: 954-675-9915
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 15, 2012
Hey Mikey-

We don't have a lot of information on the actual buyer's process/disclosure forms, is there any additional information you are able to provide? Looking forward to helping you!

Alternatively, you can always reach out to our Customer Service department, customerservice@truia.com or call 888-466-3501.

Ali, Community Manager
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 20, 2012
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