What Does a Real Estate Agent Do?

A real estate agent may be responsible for handling the sale or purchase of one of the largest assets in your lifetime. Depending on your requirements you may be working closely with this person of a period of several weeks or months. It is important that you have a good “fit” with your agent and that you are assured and comfortable that they understand your wants and needs related to the sale or purchase of your home. The best way to find an agent is to ask family, friends, or neighbours if they can recommend someone.  If you can’t find an agent that way, call your local real estate board for assistance.


Real Estate Relationships

The Code of Ethics of the Canadian Real Estate Association requires its members to explain the nature of their relationship to all parties with whom they come in contact in connection with a real estate transaction.

Before a Vendor or Purchaser enters into a discussion with a real estate salesperson or broker regarding a real estate transaction, the Vendor or Purchaser should understand what type of relationship or agency representation they have with that real estate company.



  • The AGENT is the real estate company (the broker), its branch offices, and its salespeople (Century 21 St. Andrews)
  • The CLIENT is the party who contracts for an agent to act on their behalf to either purchaser, sell, or lease a property.
  • The CUSTOMER is a person who receives services from another person’s agent.
  • The LISTING BROKER is the agency that represents the seller.
  • The BUYER BROKER generally is the agency that represents the buyer (see below)

Agency Relationships

 There are 2 types of agency relationships:  Single Agency and Dual Agency.

  • Single agency exists when an agent (company) exclusively represents either the Vendor or the Purchaser.
  • Dual agency exists when the same agent (company) represents both the Vendor and the Purchaser in the same transaction.