Friday, June 11th, 2010

The new Real Estate Agents Act

The new Real Estate Agents Act

In November 2009, the Real Estate Agents Act 2008 came into full force. The new Act introduced a number of changes, including the establishment of a Government Agency to oversee the Real Estate Agency profession, the establishment of complaint procedures, the adoption of standards of conduct to which agents should adhere, and the introduction of rules regarding the information an Agent must supply to their clients and customers.

If you are selling a house, a Real Estate Agent is now obliged to provide you with certain information before you sign an agency agreement. Before you sign, you must be given:

 A copy of an approved guide to Residential Property Agency Agreements;
 A written appraisal of the current market value of the property being sold;
 A written plan setting out how the property is to be marketed and advertised;
 A written statement setting out when commission will become payable, and the manner in which commission will be calculated. The statement should set out an estimate of the commission payable (in actual dollar terms) if the property were sold at the appraised price.
 Details of any additional expenses you may be asked to pay, including disclosure of any discounts or rebates the Agent may receive in respect to those expenses.

Having signed an agency Agreement, the Agent must then within 48 hours, give you an accurate copy of the agreement. If the agreement you signed is a sole agency agreement, you can cancel that agreement if you do so in writing before 5.00pm on the day after you have received a copy of the agreement. If the sole agency agreement is expressed to last for more than 90 days, you can cancel it after 90 days from the date you signed the agreement.