TREC Consumer Protection Notice
A real estate transaction seems like it involves a ton of papers and third parties. If buying or selling a house isn't something you do often, it can feel like you're holding on for life just trusting that your agent will take care of things. In most cases we do; but the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) is there to keep us in line.
If an agent has acted unethically, you can by all means contact the local, state and national organizations that provide oversight. Here are mine specifically:
Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR)
Williamson County Association of REALTORS® (WC REALTORS®)
Since the scope of this article is consumer protection provided by TREC, I'll address why I think contacting TREC is so powerful.
TREC issues our licenses, and TREC can take them away.
A violation with those other organizations can be embarrassing and expensive. A violation with TREC makes us shake in our boots.
TREC has the Real Estate Trust Account.
A portion of our licensing fees go into it, so funds are available to compensate you as a last resort if civil court has awarded you for damages against a license holder that they cannot pay.
TREC exists for you the consumer!
While NAR and Texas REALTORS® do incredible work on behalf of homeowners and to make home ownership more attainable, they are not regulatory agencies. They are actually business leagues, 501(c)(6), which the IRS says "direct their efforts at promoting the common economic interests of all commercial enterprises in a trade or community".
Likewise, local boards are champions of building and serving their communities. They do provide us with guidance, but refer disciplinary action to the State.
TREC Standards and Enforcement Division: 512-936-3005