Too often of late we have been encountering property owners who unfortunately haven’t been fully informed of certain aspects in the new Form 6 used in the sale/lease process of their property. To quickly explain, the Form 6 is the legally binding document required to appoint and/or reappoint a property agent, resident letting agent or property auctioneer to provide services outlined in the form; mainly the sale, lease and/or management of property. On a number of occasions we have found the issue lies in the appointed property agent failing to inform the property owner exactly what each section of the form means to the owner. Commonly, this seems to occur when the agent is pursuing a favorable outcome for themselves and whilst the information is provided, the agent might deliberately choose not to explain some aspects of the paperwork so as to not draw attention to their motives.
Unfortunately we have seen cases where owners have signed Exclusive Agency periods, whilst being unaware of the difference between Exclusive and Open Agency. Another common occurrence of late is owners signing Exclusive Agency periods for up to 12 months without being informed of the reasoning behind this and how this effects the marketing of their number one asset. Whilst these may sound like little things, it can become quite costly if your property is ineffectively handled for even a short period of time; that ‘one’ perfect buyer/tenant may just walk on by.
Don’t be afraid to question parts of the form with your Agent. There is no reason why they should not be able to completely explain to you exactly what you are agreeing to. If doubt still exist, don’t hesitate to seek independent legal advice before signing the form, in addition, more information may be found by visiting the Office of Fair Trading website.
At NAI Harcourts Pinnacle, we ensure that we go through the Form 6 in its entirety with you, no matter how many Form 6’s you’ve signed in the past, it’s our duty to you as our client that you are completely aware of your rights and obligations under the Form and of the services you are entitled to receive from us as your agent. Before any agent ask you to “just sign here”; make sure they ask you if you have any questions and you feel comfortable first. This is a great sign the agent is acting in your best interest.
Phil Grant – Director Commercial Sales & Leasing
NAI Harcourts Pinnacle