Housing and Property

The Role of Real Estate Brokers


A real estate broker is a professional trained to be an intermediary between a buyer and a seller during a real estate transaction. Here are some things to think about when a broker is involved.

A guide

A real estate broker can guide you through the process of buying a home. For example, a broker can help you find home and write up documents like a promise to purchase.

If you decide to hire a real estate broker, you must sign what is called a “brokerage contract to purchase” with them. A copy of this contrat is available on the website of the Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec (OACIQ or Quebec self-regulatory real estate brokerage organization).

If you decide to sign a brokerage contract to purchase, you must follow some rules. For example, you can’t negotiate buying a home yourself.

On their end, your real estate broker can’t represent the seller of a home you intend on buying.

Real estate broker responsibilities

Real estate brokers must respect ethics rules. For example, they must tell you about anything they know that could affect the property. So, if they learn that there are problems with the foundation or the roof, they must tell you.

Even if you aren’t represented by a real estate broker, you can benefit from the expertise of the seller’s broker. The seller’s real estate broker must treat you fairly. He or she must advise and inform you in an objective manner.

Real estate brokers must also ensure that the information they give the public is accurate. For example, they must ensure that property descriptions are accurate (square footage, year of construction, number of parking spaces, etc.).

Protections for the public

In Quebec, the real estate brokerage profession is regulated by law and by the OACIQ.

Real estate brokers must also pass a training program and have a permit.

Before deciding to work with a broker, you can check the OACIQ website to see if he or she meets these requirements. You can also check to see if the broker has ever been disciplined for ethics violations. Finally, you can also ask to see the broker’s permit.

If you think that a real estate broker isn’t respecting the rules, you can make a complaint.