What is the law regarding a changing buyer’s agent?

What are the legal and/or ethical ramifications for a home buyer changing buyer agent during the process of having made an offer on a property (short sale)? The seller has accepted the offer but the lien holder/bank has not responded to the offer as of yet?

Asked on September 20, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Washington


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

As for ethical ramifications, that is between the buyer and his/her own conscience.

As for legal ramifications, that is a matter of contract law:

1) Whether the buyer can change, when, why, etc. will be governed by the agreement between the buy and his or her agent.

2) You write that the buyer made the offer and the seller has accepted it; therefore, the changing of the agent cannot alter the terms, conditions, dates, etc. of that contract. Even if it's awkward for the buyer to deal with the contract with a new agent, he or she must do so.

However, as long as all contracts are complied with, the buyer should be able to do this.

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