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Brokerage Disclosure/Users/adamp/Desktop/APR08/Optimized/LegalHotline
Q I’m a broker who was out of the office when a prospective buyer called me to see a property listed through another real estate brokerage company. This buyer wants to see the property immediately, and I know he isn’t represented by another single agent or transaction broker and will ask me to be a single agent for him. If I don’t have time to go back to the office to get the single agent relationship disclosure form, may I show the buyer the house and provide him with the single agent relationship disclosure form later?

A No. Section 475.278(3)(b)1, Florida Statutes, provides that a written single agent relationship disclosure “must be made before, or at the time of, entering into a listing agreement or an agreement for representation or before the showing of property, whichever occurs first.”

Escrow
Q I’m a broker-associate working with a buyer who is anticipating making an offer on a condominium next week. The earnest money deposit will be held in my real estate brokerage company escrow account. Although the buyer gave me the check, he asked me not to deposit it until he actually makes an offer on the property. May I wait until the offer has been made to deposit the check?

A No. Rule 61J2-14.009, Florida Administrative Code (FAC), provides that the broker-associate must deliver the escrow deposit “to the broker or employer no later than the end of the next business day following receipt of the item to be deposited. Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays shall not be construed as business days.”

The broker must then comply with Rule 61J2-14.010(1), FAC, which requires the broker to immediately deposit the escrow deposit in the escrow account. Rule 61J2- 14.008(3), FAC, defines immediately as “… the placement of a deposit in an escrow account no later than the end of the third business day following receipt of the item to be deposited. Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays shall not be construed as business days.”

Real Estate License Law
Q I’m a broker, and a seller wants me to list her property. We’ve decided to enter into a six-month listing agreement, which will renew automatically for an additional six months if the seller doesn’t cancel in writing. May I have an automatic renewal provision in a listing agreement?

A No. Section 475.25(1)(r), Florida Statutes, provides that it is a violation of real estate licensing law if a real estate licensee “has failed in any written listing agreement to include a definite expiration date, description of the property, price and terms, fee or commission, and a proper signature of the principal(s); and has failed to give the principal(s) a legible, signed, true and correct copy of the listing agreement within 24 hours of obtaining the written listing agreement. The written listing agreement shall contain no provision requiring the person signing the listing to notify the broker of the intention to cancel the listing after such definite expiration date.”

Real Estate Practice
Q I’m a sales associate preparing an offer for my buyer. A title company is holding the earnest money deposit. What information about this title company must be reflected on a sale and purchase contract?

A Rule 61J2- 14.008(2)(b), FAC, provides that if a title company or an attorney is maintaining the earnest money deposit, the sale and purchase contract must include the name, address and telephone number of the title company or the attorney. Both the FAR and the FAR/BAR residential sale and purchase contracts provide spaces designated for this information to be written.

Search through more Q&As online in the Legal Center at floridarealtors.org.