Papering the Deal: Record Keeping Requirements for Louisiana Real Estate Agents

As real estate agents, we know all too well about the mounds of disclosures, agreements, forms, and other documents used in our trade.  It’s not unusual for a real estate deal to involve over a dozen documents, not to mention internal paperwork that a broker may require.  But what documents are Louisiana agents required—by law—to keep, and for how long?

In 2017, the Louisiana Real Estate Commission (“LREC”) substantially expanded the obligation of brokers to maintain transaction-related and other documents for a period of five years.  As brokers are now required to institute policies to ensure compliance with these provisions, the law will “trickle down” to agents to require that they maintain sufficient records.

Under the new LREC rules, brokers (and agents) must keep the following records for a period of not less than five years:

  1. disclosures;
  2. listing agreements, buyer representation agreements, other written agreements that authorize licensees to advertise or represent property for sale or lease, other written agreements that authorize licensees to receive compensation;
  3. contracts and related addenda;
  4. receipts and disbursements of compensation for services as defined under R.S. 37:1431(24) (i.e., those constituting “real estate activities”);
  5. property management agreements;
  6. appraisal, broker price opinions, and comparative market analyses;
  7. sponsorship agreements and termination paperwork; and
  8. independent contract agreements between brokers and sponsored salespersons.

See 46 LA AADC LXVII, § 1803.

While the rules do not require that they be kept electronically, records must be in a format “readily available” for the LREC.  Documents kept scattered throughout emails and printed out likely would not be “readily available” under this provision, but hard copies kept in a file categorized by transaction likely would.

These rules were published in the Louisiana Administrative Code (and on the LREC’s web site) on May 20, 2017 and apply only going forward.  For records kept before publication of the rule, the prior LREC rules would apply to basically require that agents maintain agency disclosure records and any records of compensation.

Athena recognizes that the new rules adopted by the LREC impose substantial additional requirements on agents that will make their jobs more difficult.  That’s why we developed our Agent Dashboard system that allows agents to upload and track documents for each transaction, submit documents to Athena’s management, and even request payment of a commission check by ACH transfer.

To learn more about the technology Athena offers its agents and other support that sets us apart, give us a call or send us an email.  We’d love to talk with you.

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