October 23rd - 2014

RECO decision: Sales rep enters property without permission

The following decision from RECO Discipline and Appeals Hearings has been condensed and all names have been changed.

Door lock

Door lock

The following decision from RECO Discipline and Appeals Hearings has been condensed and all names have been changed.

THE FACTS

Tara, a sales representative with Fine Realty, booked an appointment for Jane, her client, to see a property the next day. Tara made the appointment with the listing brokerage, Lima Realty, and was paged with the lockbox code. 

A few minutes after booking, Tara was advised that an offer had been made on the property, to be considered that day. As scheduled, Tara took Jane to view the property the following day. Tara told Jane that the property had been sold conditionally and the conditions would expire in a week.

Around the expiry date, Tara called Susan, the seller rep at Lima Realty, to ask if the property had been sold. Susan told her the sale had fallen through. Susan was advised by the seller, Paul, to consider further offers several days later. After this, Tara arranged with Jane to see the property the next day, a Friday. Lima Realty confirmed the appointment.

On Thursday, Susan called Tara advising her of a “bully offer” to be considered that night. Tara asked Susan to hold off until the next day so that Jane could see the place during the scheduled appointment. Susan told Tara that Paul instructed her to consider the offer that had already come in.

Tara tried unsuccessfully several times that evening to contact Susan in order to arrange to take Jane to the property the same night. Later that night, Tara took Jane to see the property without Paul’s permission, using the lockbox code previously provided. While Susan and Paul were reviewing the bully offer, they spoke with Tara on her cell. She admitted she was inside the premises. Paul asked her and Jane to leave immediately, which they did.

THE FINDINGS

The RECO panel determined that Tara acted unprofessionally when she failed to get authorization from Paul, through Susan or Lima Realty, before using the lockbox code to enter the property. Tara failed to reschedule the appointment. Tara also did not advise Jane that entering Paul’s property without his consent might put her at risk. The panel ruled that Tara breached the following sections of the REBBA 2002 Code of Ethics: (3) Fairness and honesty, etc.; (5) Conscientious and competent service, etc. and (39) Unprofessional conduct, etc.

PENALTY

Tara was fined $5,000 and ordered to complete the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) Land, Structures and Real Estate Trading course. The full decision is among those dated 2012/12/11 and can be viewed at www.reco.on.ca. Look under “Complaints & Enforcement” on the bottom left of the page and then go to “Discipline and appeals /Hearings and decisions.”  Choose the year 2012 and search by date only. 

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Ontario Real Estate Association

Jean-Adrien Delicano

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