4 Steps for a Risk-free Referral

March 1, 2007

Customers look to you for expert advice, but play it smart and give advice that doesn’t create liabilities for you.

  1. Make a list of all categories of experts whom buyers or sellers might want to consult, including home inspectors, termite inspectors, structural engineers, environmental specialists, lenders, and attorneys.
  2. List at least three experts under each category. You can make your choice on the basis of past experience or recommendations from others. Don’t forget to disclose any experts on the list who are affiliated with your company.
  3. Give the same list to every seller or buyer you work with. That way, you make clients aware of their options and the need to use specialized experts if they have concerns in a particular area. And by doing so, you ensure that every buyer or seller consistently gets the same list of names.
  4. Don’t ask for or accept any referral fee or other compensation from any individuals or companies on your list.

Source: Adapted from Real Estate Brokerage Essentials: Managing Legal and Business Issues, 3rd edition