A real estate agent is obligated, in a residential 1-4 unit building, to conduct a reasonably competent, diligent, visual inspection of accessible areas, and to disclose what that inspection revealed. An agent representing a buyer is also to assure that the buyer is well informed about the nature of the transaction – and to put themselves in the buyer’s position with respect to material issues relating to the value and desirability of the property. Wow; that’s a lot. And agents, often, don’t measure up. Sometimes that is because the agent was “merely” negligent – other times, because the agent was intentionally failing or refusing to do what s/he was supposed to do. Either way, because of the nature of the “fiduciary” relationship between an agent and a customer, the agent can be liable for fraud — “constructive fraud” or “actual” fraud. Either way, it hurts.
As a real estate broker for nearly 40 years (who actually sold residential and commercial real estate for a living – in a past life, 20 years ago), Christopher Hanson has been there and done that. He knows exactly what an agent should do – and what to do when an agent didn’t. Hanson Law Firm defends agents when they get sued (believe it or not, most agents do a really good job), and sues them when they screw up.