Have you attended an open house and innocently discussed your current situation with the hosting agent when you were told to STOP, and a green paper was being put in front of you to sign?
This green paper is known as The Consumer Notice, and it must be presented by any licensed PA Real Estate Professional before they can have any discussion on your needs and motivations for seeking real estate services. It is NOT A CONTRACT, but an affirmation that you, the consumer, have been advised of your rights.
The Consumer Notice serves as notice of your rights and business relationships that exist in a real estate transaction.
By signing The Consumer Notice, you and the agent have NOT entered into a binding contract, but simply acknowledged you received information pertaining to your rights in representation in a real estate transaction. For example, if you're a buyer attending an open house, the agent hosting the open house may identify themselves as the seller's agent and their duty is to their client – the seller.
This agent has a fiduciary relationship with the seller and you should to be careful what information you disclose to that agent in what may seem like casual conversation. If you end up pursuing a purchase of that home, you may be sorry you disclosed certain information. This is where you have the right to know that you may want to consider a Buyer's Agent to represent your interests.
The next time a Consumer Notice is presented to you, read it carefully and afterwards don't be afraid to sign, it is there for your protection.
A copy of the Pennsylvania "Consumer Notice" is available at any real estate brokerage office or from any licensee. To obtain a copy of the "Consumer Notice" or to gain more information about agency relationships in Pennsylvania, feel free to contact us at 717-364-3000.
For further information about real estate laws and consumer education in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, visit the Pennsylvania Association of REALTORS.