What is co-agency? TPC – Practice Q24

What is co-agency? How to avoid being cut-off?

Co-agency as in Standard 7 of MEAS 2014 has the below definition.

7.1.1 Co-agency is co-operative agreement between a listing agency firm and a co-agency firm who introduces a prospective purchaser/tenant in the sale/rental or leasing of a property.

Being cut-off means the listing agent is being bypassed when the co-agent goes direct to the owner - principal. This is common occurrence when the listing agent cannot control the direct negotiation of co-agent with the landlord/owner. It ends up with principal paying the co-agent commission bypassing the listing agent.

To avoid such happening, the listing agent must ensure the confidentiality of the owner. In other words, the co-agent MUST not get in touch with principal. This is kind of difficult, unless it is an empty house. Usually, when there is owner in the property when viewing, this will occur as co-agent will end up talking to owner direct. Therefore, the best policy for co-agency practice is not to allow co-agent to do viewing. Only the purchaser and listing agent are allowed to do viewing, with or without the owner.