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Realtor group questions real estate negotiation duties

Great Falls association asks state regulator for guidance

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A Realtor group in Montana has asked a state regulatory board to consider whether it is a license violation for a listing broker to allow agents representing buyers to directly submit offers to a home seller. Zane K. Sullivan, a lawyer for the Great Falls Association of Realtors, said in a petition to the Montana Board of Realty Regulation that the association "has encountered an MLS listing which advertises the particular company's ability to put buyer agents in direct contact with sellers, completely foregoing the listing agent." The MLS information, stated Sullivan, "indicates that buyer agents can present their offers directly to the sellers and also set their appointments directly with the sellers. (The association) believes these statements to be in violation of the negotiation duties required by a broker," based on state code. "The question presented for declaratory ruling is: Can a real estate broker or salesperson negotiate away part of the ...