FACTS:

The listing agent refuses to submit the buyer’s offer to the seller unless the buyer pays a $100 “processing fee.”

ISSUE:

May the listing agent require a processing fee as a condition of submitting an offer?

ANSWER:

No.

DISCUSSION:

A listing agent is required by the Commissioner’s Rules to “promptly submit to the . . .  client all offers to purchase or lease the listed property.”  See A.A.C. R4-28-801(B).  The listing agent may not condition submitting of an offer on the buyer or buyer’s agent paying a “processing fee.”

Note:  The practice of collecting a processing fee is likely a RESPA violation as well.  See Busby v. JRHBW Realty, Inc. d/b/a RealtySouth, 642 F.Supp.2d 1283 (11th Cir. 2009).

 

Arizona REALTOR® Magazine – March 2012; updated December 2015


About the Author

Michelle Lind

K. Michelle Lind, CEO of Arizona REALTORS®, is also an attorney, State Bar of Arizona board certified real estate specialist, and the author of "Arizona Real Estate: A Professional’s Guide to Law and Practice". AAR is the largest professional trade association in the state comprised of more than 45,000 REALTORS® and thousands more affiliate members. Please note that this article is of a general nature and may not be updated or revised for accuracy as statutory or case law changes following the date of first publication. Further, this article reflects only the opinion of the author, is not intended as definitive legal advice and you should not act upon it without seeking independent legal counsel.