March 22nd - 2017

RECO: Oral promise spurs complaint

The sellers of this house were told they would receive a rebate on terms and conditions, but that rebate never arrived.

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The sellers of this house were told they would receive a rebate on terms and conditions, but that rebate never arrived.

RECO bannerThe following decision from RECO Discipline and Appeal Hearings has been condensed. All individual and corporate names have been changed.


Greg wanted to sell his house. He listed his property for sale with Bayline Realty, with Abigail as the listing salesperson. At around the same time, Nick and Sue entered into a Buyer Customer Service Agreement with Bayline Realty, represented by Abigail. Also at that time, Greg, Nick and Sue all signed the acknowledgement portion of a Confirmation of Cooperation and Representation form. This form stated that Bayline Realty represented Greg and was providing customer service to Nick and Sue.

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The seller and buyers entered into an agreement of purchase and sale. The parties agreed on a price of $805,500. Abigail gave the buyers her word that she would pay them a rebate on terms and conditions. However, she did not put this in writing. The transaction was completed, but Abigail did not pay the couple the rebate. Nick and Sue complained to RECO.


The RECO panel determined that Abigail acted unprofessionally, committed and error and did not provide competent service by failing to put the terms and conditions of her oral promise to the buyers in writing. The panel also stated that she had treated Nick and Sue unfairly and unethically.

The panel ruled that Abigail breached the following sections of the REBBA 2002 Code of Ethics: (3) Fairness, honesty, etc.; (5) Conscientious and competent services, etc.; (38) Error, misrepresentation, fraud, etc.; and (39) Unprofessional conduct etc.


Abigail was order to pay a fine of $2,000 to the Real Estate Council of Ontario. She was also required to enroll in and provide proof of completion of two courses provided by the Real Estate Institute of Canada: the Ethics and Business Practice course and the Legal Issues in Real Estate course. Additionally, upon the completion of these courses, she was required to write an essay reflecting on the lessons she had learned about her responsibilities to clients and customers.

To view the full decision, visit Click on Complaints and Enforcement and scroll to Regulatory Activities and Decisions. You will find the Discipline and Appeals Decisions filed by year. You can find this decision among those dated 2015/12/07.

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