New Real Estate Disclosures for New York: Who Really Benefits?


Would you give blanket consent for your real estate agent to share information with the other party's agent in a home purchase, as long as both agents work for the same broker? That's permitted under a New York State law given final approval this week.

New York's new law will allow buyers and sellers of all dwellings to sign, in advance, just one catchall consent form agreeing to dual agency representation for any property. A dual agency relationship is when both the seller's agent and buyer's agent represent the same brokerage. And under existing law, buyers have had to sign a new form before each showing of any property in which a dual agency relationship exists.

Arguments can be made for whether the new law, effective in January, benefits the broker's agent, the seller or the buyer. In theory, it is meant to make disclosures more transparent for the buyer. But unless a buyer is willing to skip seeing quite a few properties, or chooses to use an agent from a small boutique brokerage, he or she just might not be that much better off.