Consumer Information

Author: EAAB

Estate Agent Duties: [a guide for Consumers]

When buying, selling or renting a property, you may decide to ask an estate agent to help you. An estate agent is a licensed person who must hold a current Fidelity Fund Certificate and should follow your instructions, or “mandate” to:

  • Market your home and find you a willing and financially able buyer or tenant; or
  • Find you a home to rent or buy

Estate agents must follow a strict Code of Conduct while carrying out your mandate, and they should only claim their fee, or “commission”, when a deal has reached a successful end – not in advance or when a sale or lease agreement is first signed.

You should never deal with an “agent” who does not hold a current Fidelity Fund Certificate from The Estate Agency Affairs Board.

Your Deposit:

Whether you buy or lease a home, you will usually have to pay a deposit. You should always:

  • Insist on a receipt, whether you pay in cash or by cheque; and
  • Make all payments only at an estate agency office, or an attorney’s office.

Your Protector:

The Estate Agency Affairs Board has full powers to help and protect you in your dealings with estate agents. It can:

  • Fine or put out of business any estate agent who breaks the ethical rules in the Code of Conduct; and
  • Refund a deposit or other payment to you if it has been stolen by an estate agent.

The Estate Agency Affairs Board
Private Bag X10
Tel. No: 087 285 3222