Ethical Responsibilities of a Real Estate Agent: The Case of the Expired Listing

In the world of real estate business, it is essential to maintain ethical practices to protect both buyers and sellers as well as the agents themselves. This emphasis on ethics is even more important when it comes to handling expired listings. Let's look at a practical scenario to illustrate this point.

Scenario: Change of Property Agent

A real estate agent, commonly known as a “broker,” had a listing for a house that had expired. The next day, the house was listed with another broker and offered on the MLS (Multiple Listing System). A week later, a third licensee called the first “broker” and requested the key to show the house. Faced with this request, the initial “broker” faces some options:

Possible Responses and Their Appropriateness

  1. Inform that the house is currently off the market (“The house is currently off the market.”): NO. This does not reflect the reality that the home has been listed with another agent.
  2. Leave the key under the doormat (“He will leave the key under the doormat.”): NO. This would be inappropriate and potentially unsafe.
  3. “He will set up an appointment for showing the home.”: NO. It is not your responsibility as you are not the current agent for the property.
  4. Inform that you are no longer the agent in charge of the property (“He is no longer the listing agent.”): YEAH. This is the correct and ethical answer. The initial “broker” HAS TO Inform the caller of this information. Any other behavior would be considered unethical and potentially illegal.


Integrity and ethics in the real estate business are essential. When faced with situations such as an expired listing, it is vital that agents act honestly and clearly, ensuring that transactions and communications are carried out appropriately and legally.

Legal and Tax Disclaimer

Please be advised that the content presented in this blog is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal or tax advice. The articles and information provided here are written from the perspective of a real estate agent affiliated with Keller Williams, and do not represent legal or tax counsel.

As the author, I am a licensed real estate professional under Keller Williams, holding Brokerage DRE License Number: #02197031. However, it is important to note that my expertise is in the field of real estate, and not in legal or tax matters. The insights and opinions shared on this blog are based on my experiences and knowledge in the real estate industry and should be treated as general guidance rather than definitive legal or tax advice.

For specific legal or tax concerns relating to any real estate transactions or investments, readers are strongly encouraged to consult with a qualified attorney or tax advisor who can provide tailored advice based on your individual circumstances and the latest legal and regulatory requirements.

The information on this blog is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, and I, along with Keller Williams and its affiliates, disclaim all liability for any loss, damage, or misunderstanding arising from reliance on the information contained herein.

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3 thoughts on “Responsabilidades Éticas de un Agente Inmobiliario: El Caso de la “Listing” Expirada”

  1. I don't think the title of your article matches the content lol. Just kidding, mainly because I had some doubts after reading the article.

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