Real Estate Confidentiality Agreements – Are They Necessary?

This begs the question about whether a celebrity needs a confidentiality agreement or not when it comes to purchasing real estate. Truthfully, there’s not really a good answer for this because it’s the wrong question. The correct question is whether a celebrity can get a confidentiality agreement when it comes to real estate purchases.

The initial answer off the cuff is “no”. The more complicated answer is “it depends.” Let’s explore both of these.

Residential real estate, when we’re talking about buying and selling homes, is an open disclosure industry. Every person has the right to go through both local and state records to learn anything about any house and who the homeowners are. In every community across the country, when homes are bought and sold the listings are posted in the newspaper. The name of the buyer is listed; the names of the sellers aren’t always listed, though the names will be in the local and state records. So, in this instance, there is no confidentiality agreement to even consider.

Now, if a celebrity is looking to buy property with the intention of building a home, suddenly the rules change. Strangely enough, buying property is often considered as more of a business purchase than a personal purchase, and therefore it’s easier to disguise yourself if that’s your intention. In this instance, a celebrity who’s looking for some privacy can get a confidentiality agreement by hiring someone to act as a broker on their behalf to acquire the property.

And one other thing is at play here. Though once a home is purchased the buyer’s name will be disclosed, before a home is purchased the buyer can actually have a confidentiality agreement with a broker, who becomes the person searching for the home. A celebrity might fear that someone might increase the price of a house if they know a famous person is interested in buying it, or might spread the word around the neighborhood that someone well known is a potential buyer. Some celebrities would rather keep that private, and in that case having a confidentiality agreement works well.