1927 Edmonton Real Estate Association Code of EthicsPART I PROFESSIONAL RELATIONS
In the best interest of society, of his associates and of his own business, the Broker should be loyal to the Real Estate Association of his community and active in its work; and he should willingly share with his fellow members the lessons of his experience.
The Broker should so conduct his business as to avoid controversies with his fellow Brokers; but in the event of controversies between Brokers who are members of the same real estate Association, such controversy should be submitted for arbitration in accordance with the regulations of their Association and not to a suit at law, and the decision in such arbitrations should be accepted as final and binding.
When a broker is charged with unethical practice, he should voluntarily place all pertinent facts before the proper tribunal of the real estate Association of which he is a member, for investigation and judgement.
A Broker should never publicly criticize a competitor; he should never express an opinion of a competitor's transaction unless requested to do so by one of the principals, and his opinion then should be rendered in accordance with strict professional courtesy and integrity.
A Broker should never seek information about a competitor's transaction to use for the purpose of closing the transaction himself or diverting the customer to another property.
When a Broker accepts a listing from another Broker, the agency of the broker who offers the listing should be respected until it has expired and the property has come to the attention of the accepting broker from a different source, or until the owner, without solicitation, offers to list with the accepting Broker: furthermore, such a listing should not be passed to a third broker without the consent of the listing broker.
Negotiations concerning property which is listed with one broker exclusively should be carried on with the listing broker, not with the owner.
The schedule of fees established by the various real estate Associations are believed to represent fair compensation of services rendered in their communities and should be observed by every Broker.
A Broker should not solicit the services of any employee in the organization of a fellow Broker without the knowledge of the employer.
No sign should be placed on any property by a Broker without the consent of the owner or his agent.
In justice to those who place their interests in his hands, the Broker should endeavor always to be informed regarding the law, proposed legislation, and other essential facts and public policies which affect these interests.
In accepting the agency for property, the Broker pledges himself to be fair to purchaser or tenant, as well as the owner whom he represents and whose interests he should protect and promote as he would his own.
A Broker should not buy for himself property listed with him, nor should he acquire any interest therein, without first making his true position clearly known to the listing owner.
When asked for an appraisal of real property or an opinion on a real estate problem, the Broker should never give an unconsidered answer; his counsel constitutes a professional service which he should render only after having ascertained and weighted the facts, and for which he should make a fair charge.
The Broker should encourage the naming of the actual or an obviously nominal consideration in a Transfer, Agreement for Sale or Assignment.
When acting as agent in the management of property, a Broker should not accept any commissions, rebates or profit on expenditures made for the owner without his full knowledge and consent.
Before offering a property listed with him by the owner, it is the Broker's duty to advise the owner honestly and intelligently regarding its fair market value.
It is the duty of every Broker to protect the public against fraud, misrepresentation, or unethical practices in connection with real estate transactions.
Property should be offered by a Broker solely on its merit without exaggeration, concealment, or any form of deception or misleading representation.
It is the duty of a Broker to ascertain all pertinent facts whenever possible concerning every property for which he accepts the agency, so that in offering the property he may avoid error, exaggeration and misrepresentation.
A broker should never offer a property without the authorization of the owner.
The price at which a Broker offers a property should not be higher than that which the owner has openly agreed to take.
Before a Broker buys for a client property in the ownership of which the Broker has an interest, he should disclose his interest to all parties to the transaction.
Before a Broker sells property in the ownership of which he is interested, he should make it clear to the purchaser that he is acting solely for the owner.
A Broker when acting as a Broker should make it clear for which party he is acting, and he should not receive compensation from more than one party except with the full knowledge and consent of all parties to the transaction.
Under no circumstances should a Broker permit a property in his charge to be used for illegal or immoral purposes.
In closing transactions, the Broker should advise the use of legal counsel when the interest of any party to the transactions appears to require it; and in all cases he should exercise care in the preparation of documents so that they shall embody the exact agreements reached.
At the time the agreement is reached as to the terms of a transaction the Broker should fully inform each party regarding commissions and other expenses to which each is respectively liable.
Before the closing of a transaction, the Broker should recommend the examination of title and conveyancing papers.
All contracts and agreements with which a Broker is a party should be made in writing and should be complete and exact.
A Broker should never be instrumental in introducing into a neighbourhood a character of property or occupancy, members of any race or nationality, or any individuals whose presence will clearly be detrimental to property values in that neighbourhood.
No instructions nor inducement from any client or customer relieves the Broker from his responsibility strictly to observe this code of Ethics.
The Memorandum of Association of the Edmonton Real Estate Board Co-Operative Listing Bureau Limited included ten real estate agents as founding members: M.C. Cummings, I.C. Haliburton, I.N. Winterburn, S.T. Lawrie, I.A. Weber, S.T. Melton, D. Spencer, F. Alloway, W.B. MacGregor, T.C. Visser.
The original document listed the Association's objectives as follows:
To facilitate the marketing of Real Estate by relieving the sellers of the duplication of listing their property with numerous Real Estate Brokers and generally providing a better Real Estate service to the economical benefit of the buyer and the seller.
To promote and foster an educational program for the betterment of the Real Estate profession to the benefit of the buyer and seller of Real Estate.
To advance this Co-Operatives movement as a system if business having service as its motive.
This article is extracted from John Gilpin, Responsible Enterprise: A History of Edmonton Real Estate & the Edmonton Real Estate Board. (Edmonton: Edmonton Real Estate Board, 1997). The Heritage Community Foundation and the Alberta Real Estate Foundation would like to thank John Gilpin and the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton for permission to reproduce this material.