When is it crossing the line?
A very well known lawyer in Colorado taught the first Fair Housing Class I ever took. He said “All you need to know about Fair Housing is – it about the house not the people in it – now sit down you have to be here for four hours.” And the Ethics class’s really aren’t that different. After all, most of us have the common sense to know right from wrong. But the longer the Ethics code gets the more gray areas seem to appear. But every time I take one of these class’s the instructor manages to get me thinking. They will give an example or tell a story that makes you pause and think. Which I guess is the purpose of the class. After all, my opinion of right and wrong isn’t always going to mesh with others.
Recently a very thoughtful respected Realtor called to set a showing appointment on a property my office has listed. She called again the day of the showing to confirm. She called again to say they might be a few minutes early. Then she called immediately after to give me her buyer’s opinion. All great stuff!
Now the disconcerting part. This thoughtful agent gave me a review of the house from her buyer’s point of view. All very nice, accept for the broken pipe due to an outside faucet freezing and the condition of the pets. I won’t elaborate at this moment. But I promise you have never heard anything like what I heard this morning. You have heard or experienced showing nightmares before, but nothing like this one. And for the faint of heart, the pets were not in immediate danger. But the situation needs to be remedied soon.
So what do you do when you go into a property and you find kids or pets in danger? What is the duty of the agent? What can I do to correct the situation and not cross lines of fair housing, ethics and agency law?