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PRDS BRBC And BNWA Forms Will Soon Be Available Online

By Dave Hamerslough

November 10, 2023

PRDS “Exclusive Buyer Representation And Broker Compensation Agreement” and “Buyer Needs And Wants Assessment” Forms Will Soon Be Online

My article from August 2023 (https://www.rhrc.net/prds-forms-update/) provided some of the highlights of the PRDS Exclusive Buyer Representation And Broker Compensation Agreement (“BRBC”) and the Buyer Needs And Wants Assessment (“BNWA”) forms (then tentatively called “EBR” and “BNW”).

Since my August article, the PRDS Forms Committee revised and finalized the BNWA and created the “Buyer Update And Assessment Of Identified Property” (“BNWU”). These forms will soon be available online. Highlights include the following:

  • The BNWA is a three-page form. The first two pages ask the buyer to provide information on general preferences, needs, wants, and concerns. The buyer’s requested information is collectively defined as “Preferences” in the form, and that is how they are referred to in this article. There are three categories of Preferences with the following headings: (1) Personal and Financial Information, (2) Property Preferences and Concerns, and (3) Buyer’s Expertise and Past Experience.
  • Page three of the BNWA is to be used once the buyer has identified a property they want to acquire. At that point, the buyer is asked to review their stated Preferences (pages 1-2) and confirm that the Property they have identified meets those Preferences and/or to confirm that the buyer is still satisfied with the identified property even if it does not meet all of their Preferences. One reason for doing so is to address the possibility of a buyer later claiming that their agent is responsible for the fact that the property they purchased didn’t meet their original stated Preferences.
  • Page three then asks the buyer to identify any property-specific concerns or problems based upon, among other things, their review of a seller’s disclosure packet, any documents and/or information they may have obtained from any other source, and their review and inspection of the property and the neighborhood. In addition, the buyer is asked to indicate whether any of their Preferences are or are not applicable to the identified property.
  • The property-specific concerns or problems sections also ask the buyer to identify their desired present and/or future uses of the property (collectively defined as “Uses”) and any desired repairs, modifications, or additions (collectively defined as “Changes”) to the property. The last sentence of the form clearly warns the buyer that they are responsible for contacting appropriate professionals and governmental entities regarding the viability of the buyer’s Uses and/or Changes. This warning is, among other things, designed to help protect agents from buyers’ claims that the buyer “assumed” the agent would be doing that investigation.
  • Page three of the BNWA also exists as a stand-alone, one-page form (“BNWU”) that is to be used in the event that the buyer identifies additional properties for potential acquisition. This stand-alone form allows the buyer to update their specific concerns or problems with each property they ultimately identify for potential acquisition.
  • The information in the BNWA is confidential and, regardless of agency relationships, will not be disclosed by the broker and/or agent to anyone unless the buyer authorizes the broker/agent to do so.
  • The BNWA is bundled with the BRBC. It does not, however, have to be used with that form. The BRBC recognizes that a buyer’s Preferences can be provided to the broker in any document of buyer’s choosing.

The BNWA is designed to assist brokers and agents in helping buyers search for and acquire property by asking buyers to identify and document their Preferences.  Once a property has been identified, the BNWA will assist in the buyer’s investigation and evaluation of the property. It also will hopefully eliminate potential misunderstandings on these subjects.

One additional benefit of consistently using the BNWA is that it may prevent a buyer from claiming that they were not treated fairly as required by the state and federal Fair Housing laws. Past and current Fair Housing claims against real estate agents have focused on agents seeking different information from buyers depending upon their race, color, ethnicity, or any of the other protected classifications.  Typically, agents have no documentation to prove that they were seeking the same information from all buyers because agents have traditionally relied on oral discussions or incomplete written communications prompted by those discussions.  Using the BNWA with all buyers will help prove that the agents are acting in compliance with the Fair Housing laws.

Finally, while the BNWA and BNWU were designed to be used in conjunction with the BRBC, they can be used when working with a buyer even if there is no Buyer Representation And Broker Compensation Agreement.   However, if you are using the C.A.R. Form BRBC buyer representation agreement, you should consider modifying that form in the Other Terms section to allow the buyer to fill out a proper questionnaire about the buyer’s preferences rather than the contractually required C.A.R. BMI form (¶ 7E).