The Tenant Defender Brokerage
Anthony Dyson Broker of Record 416-410-1080

How to Hire A Broker

“A person cannot mount two horses or bend two bows. And a servant cannot serve two masters or that servant can honor the one and offend the other” -Thomas 47

When choosing a broker, find one who only represents Tenants, not building owners. These Tenant representatives can give you unbiased building information because they represent only one side of the bargaining unit and that’s your side.  

Not all Tenant representatives are the same and it’s your job to seek out the best, the most experienced and most trustworthy one. 

Most of the large commercial realty firms have gone to a "deal maker" mode. The firm and its agents work as both Landlord’s and Tenant's agents. This is a good business model for the broker but many times the firm and its agents will work as both Tenant and Landlord agent at the same time! 

Bigger is Not Better

Increasingly as the large commercial brokers become even larger through mergers and acquisitions, this becomes more and more common.  Many times, to maximize revenues, a broker will also take on the role of property manager for the Landlord.

There is no problem when agents are showing other companies listings but as soon as they show you one of their own companies listings the water starts to get a little muddy. A broker in this situation is in an uncomfortable position trying to advocate for you while at the same time trying to fill a company listing.

Not only may a deal maker “Tenant broker” try to maneuver you toward a building which is a listing of their own but also legally a dual agency is created when a listing agent is also acting as a Tenant representative on any company listing. 

Dual Agency?  Good or Bad?

I've been doing 100% Tenant Rep since 1989 which is single agency before it was fashionable to do so. I believe I was the first or second company in Toronto to do so. 

Often smart people question why they shouldn't just use a tenant rep from one of the big brokers who also provide advisory services to Landlords. 

They help find the site, provide leasing services and even manage the properties. They also may represent the tenant with one or more agents from their "tenant rep" division on this same property. About 80% of their revenues come from Landlords. It always seemed to me to be a no brainer that a tenant should use a 100% Tenant rep. But what do I know?

Well, when I worked as Landlord's agent, I saw a lot of shenanigans.  

It also seems  New York State's legal division has some advice to those who doubt whether single agency is best.


Some highlights below:


"With the growing number of very large and widespread brokerages, the issue of dual agency arises more frequently than ever before. Any purchaser, seller, lessor or lessee confronted with a dual agency issue by their real estate agent should not take the issue lightly. Parties to a real estate transaction, including real estate brokers and salespersons themselves, seldom realize the inherent problems of a real estate agent acting as a dual agent.

Dual agency arises when a real estate broker or salesperson represents adverse parties (e.g., a buyer and seller) in the same transaction.


With the growing number of very large and widespread brokerages, the issue of dual agency arises more frequently than ever before. Any purchaser, seller, lessor or lessee confronted with a dual agency issue by their real estate agent should not take the issue lightly. Parties to a real estate transaction, including real estate brokers and salespersons themselves, seldom realize the inherent problems of a real estate agent acting as a dual agent.

Dual agency arises when a real estate broker or salesperson represents adverse parties (e.g., a buyer and seller) in the same transaction."