Navigating Self-Represented Parties

Tuesday Feb 27th, 2024


Here’s what you need to know if you are going to be involved in a real estate transaction with a self-represented party where the other party has chosen not to be represented by a real estate agent.

It’s important to note that there have been regulatory changes made to the Trust in Real Estate Services Act (TRESA) that came into force as of December 1, 2023. This legislation introduced the Self-Representation Party ((SRP). Under TRESA, an SRP is a person who is NOT a client of a real estate brokerage.

Who is the Self-Represented Party?
If a party is involved in a real estate transaction and is not a client of a real estate brokerage, they are considered a self-represented party. This means they have chosen not to work with a real estate agent, and should understand the rights, obligations, and risks of representing themselves in a real estate transaction. Very few buyers or sellers make this choice.

Things they need to know
They will be dealing with a buyer/seller who is benefiting from the knowledge & expertise required to navigate the transaction, on their own.

The real agent that is representing their client has a legal obligation to do what is best for their client. They must promote and protect their client’s best interests.

You, the agent, are obligated to share anything the self-represented client tells them with their client.

They should be made aware that you are obligated to share anything they tell you with their client, including:

  • your motivation for buying or selling the property;
  • the minimum or maximum price you are willing to offer or accept; and,
  • your preferred terms or conditions for an agreement of purchase and sale.

The real estate agent might provide the self-represented client with assistance. It is important to understand any assistance that might be provided by the agent:

  • must be a service to their client, or incidental to a service to their client;
  • must promote and protect the best interests of their client; and,
  • must not include opinions or advice to you related to the transaction.

RECO recommends that anyone participating in a real estate transaction seek independent professional advice before proceeding or receiving assistance from the other sides real estate agent. It is also important to remember that they are not a client of the other sides agent. That real estate agent cannot act in the self-represented party's best interests, and the self-represented party should not rely on the agent’s knowledge, skill, or judgment in this transaction.

The real estate agent must explain all of this to the self-interested party and have them sign a form confirming that they have done so.

The self- represented party may change their mind
If, after reading this form and the RECO Information Guide the real estate agent provided, the self-interested party is considering becoming a client of a brokerage because they would like to benefit from the services, opinions, and advice that a real estate agent can offer, they have a right to seek services and representation from a different designated representative — an agent who can represent you
in the transaction — or a different brokerage.

Please visit the link to the RECO Information and Disclosure to Self Represented Party Form 


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