What is dual fee liability and why can it
cost you money?
You instructed Agent A to sell your house and they did viewings, had an offer from Buyer 1 sent out Memorandum of Sale but the sale didn’t proceed for some reason and you fell out with the agent or got fed up waiting.
You call Agent B and ask them to work for you to find a new buyer. Maybe you found Agent B because they put a flyer through your letterbox or they’ve been calling you because you didn’t choose them in the first place.
However this happens, Agent B must tell you that you risk Dual Fee Liability.
Where the problem starts
If Buyer 1 comes back and offers again because they have sorted out their mortgage or have now sold to a completed chain so are ready to move, Agent A can legitimately say they introduced this buyer and their fee is due.
You are now in contract with Agent B and their fee is due too because they have now agreed a sale to Buyer 1under their contract.
So, you are now liable for the fee you had agreed with Agent A as well as the fee agreed with Agent B, probably doubling the cost you had planned for.
Agent B is bound under Property Obmudsman Code of Practice to ensure that a buyer doesn’t unwittingly become liable for two fees. They must inform you of this risk in writing and, if they didn’t you may have grounds to refuse to pay their fee but you must pay Agent A’s fee.
How to avoid it?
I’ll blog about it later