Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 54.1. Professions and Occupations
Chapter 21. Real Estate Brokers, Sales Persons and Rental Location Agents
7/17/2019

§ 54.1-2134. Licensees engaged by tenants.

A. A licensee engaged by a tenant shall:

1. Perform in accordance with the terms of the brokerage agreement;

2. Promote the interests of the tenant by:

a. Seeking a lease at a rent and with terms acceptable to the tenant; however, the licensee shall not be obligated to seek other properties for the tenant while the tenant is a party to a lease or a letter of intent to lease exists under which the tenant has not yet taken possession, unless agreed to as part of the brokerage agreement, or unless the lease or the letter of intent to lease so provides;

b. Assisting in the drafting and negotiating of leases, letters of intent to lease, and rental applications, and presenting, in a timely fashion, all written offers or counteroffers to and from the tenant and landlord pursuant to § 54.1-2101.1, even when the tenant is already a party to a lease or a letter of intent to lease; and

c. Providing reasonable assistance to the tenant to finalize the lease agreement;

3. Maintain confidentiality of all personal and financial information received from the client during the brokerage relationship and any other information that the client requests during the brokerage relationship be maintained confidential unless otherwise provided by law or the tenant consents in writing to the release of such information;

4. Exercise ordinary care;

5. Account in a timely manner for all money and property received by the licensee in which the tenant has or may have an interest;

6. Disclose to the tenant material facts related to the property or concerning the transaction of which the licensee has actual knowledge; and

7. Comply with all requirements of this article, fair housing statutes and regulations for residential real estate transactions as applicable, and all other applicable statutes and regulations which are not in conflict with this article.

B. Licensees shall treat all prospective landlords honestly and shall not knowingly give them false information. If a licensee has actual knowledge of the existence of defective drywall in a residential property, the licensee shall disclose the same to the prospective tenant. For purposes of this section, "defective drywall" means all defective drywall as defined in § 36-156.1. No cause of action shall arise against any licensee for revealing information as required by this article or applicable law.

C. A licensee engaged by a tenant in a real estate transaction may provide assistance to the landlord or prospective landlord by performing ministerial acts. Performing such ministerial acts that are not inconsistent with subsection A shall not be construed to violate the licensee's brokerage relationship with the tenant unless expressly prohibited by the terms of the brokerage agreement, nor shall performing such ministerial acts be construed to form a brokerage relationship with the landlord or prospective landlord.

D. A licensee engaged by a tenant does not breach any duty or obligation to the tenant by showing properties in which the tenant is interested to other prospective tenants, whether as clients or customers, by representing other tenants looking for the same or other properties to lease, or by representing landlords relative to other properties.

E. Licensees in residential real estate transactions shall disclose brokerage relationships pursuant to the provisions of this article.

F. Notwithstanding any other provision of law requiring written brokerage agreements or governing the duties of licensees, nothing in this chapter shall be construed to require that a written agreement between a licensee and a prospective tenant be executed prior to the licensee's showing properties to the prospective tenant.

1995, cc. 741, 813; 2006, c. 627; 2011, cc. 34, 46; 2012, c. 750; 2016, c. 334.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.