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Considerations on Real Estate Agents and Property Managers in Idaho

Idaho statutes are clear regarding a real estate agent’s obligations when representing a buyer or a seller. These statutory agency requirements are spelled out in a pamphlet that is required to be given to residential purchasers only.

As is the case in other jurisdictions, allowing a real estate agent to represent both buyer and seller can be problematic, and in many cases presents an insurmountable conflict of interest.

Property Managers.  If you plan to utilize the services of a property manager, be aware that property managers are not required to be licensed in Idaho. Get references, check their credit history, and check for lawsuits at the Idaho Court Repository

Beware of vague or undefined terms in property management contracts. Be especially careful of payouts to the manager based on unspecified percentages of tenant costs, late fees, pet deposits, and where your deposit monies are held and by whom.

Above all, retain control over your bank account, and do not give signing authority for more than a specified amount of money.

Earnest monies. It is the preferred practice to deposit earnest monies for a real estate purchase and sales agreement with a neutral third party, usually the title company that is also performing escrow services.

Some real estate companies and contracts still allow the buyer’s or seller’s broker to hold earnest money funds prior to close of escrow. Even though statutory requirements applicable to how a real estate broker accounts for earnest money are relatively precise, when a neutral third party holds the funds a signed release by both parties usually facilitates contract termination without litigation.

This posting is not legal advice. Legal advice is based on specific facts. This information is necessarily general in nature.