It’s important to us that you, as a consumer, understand your rights and protections in a real estate transaction. Below is some helpful information you should be aware of as you consider buying, selling, or renting a home.
Austin REALTORS® are committed to providing homebuyers, sellers, and renters with a smooth real estate transaction, including standing by their clients as trusted advisors.
The Fair Housing Act protects people from discrimination when renting, buying, or securing financing. It covers discrimination based on race, religion, color, national origin, sex, disability, and the presence of children. This is embodied as policy in the Code of Ethics. NAR also supports equal opportunity based on sexual orientation and gender identity, which was amended in the Code of Ethics in 2010 and 2013. REALTORS® continue to advocate for these protections to be added to the federal Fair Housing Act.
The City of Austin has its own Fair Housing Ordinance, as well. Learn more about Fair Housing protections here.
The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) ensures that consumers throughout the nation are provided with helpful information about the cost of the mortgage settlement and protected from unnecessarily high settlement charges caused by certain abusive practices.
RESPA requires that consumers receive disclosures at various times throughout a real estate transaction. It also outlaws kickbacks that increase settlement service costs. RESPA is administered and enforced by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
If you are a consumer with a question or complaint related to your mortgage or mortgage servicer, please call at (855) 411-2372 or contact the CFPB’s Consumer Response team. You can also file a complaint with the CFPB here.
Filing a Complaint
If you wish to file a complaint against a real estate agent or brokerage, follow the steps below:
- Look the agent up on the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) website. This will provide you with the agent’s license number and brokerage.
- Contact the agent’s Broker to give the brokerage the opportunity to resolve the issue, if possible. Open, constructive discussion often resolves questions or differences, eliminating the need for further action.
- If a resolution still cannot be reached, you can look up the agent and file a complaint with Texas REALTORS®.