The art market is unregulated in many ways. Art advisors, dealers and galleries don’t need certificates or licenses to operate. At the same time, forgeries, conflicts of interest and undisclosed commissions are a concern for collectors, understandably so. Increased regulation is often suggested as a means to make the market more transparent and professional. Maybe.
But until then, operating in the art market provides you with a unique opportunity to set yourself apart as an honest, professional and competent art advisor. Even though barriers to entry are low in the art market, your personal ethics will determine your reputation in the long run. To my mind you act in your clients’ best interest not only because it is the right thing to do, but also because cheating your clients is not very smart. It’s bad for business.