EAA proposal aims to protect primary buyers
The Estate Agents Authority (EAA) wants to further increase the regulation of agents' activities with a proposal requiring them to sign an agency agreement with buyers of primary properties.
The authority ruled in 2000 that buyers of secondary homes must sign an agency agreement before viewing an apartment.
The new move is aimed at providing better and more accurate property particulars to buyers. An EAA spokeswoman said the idea was to ensure that prospective buyers' interests were protected and that the rights and obligations of the parties concerned were well defined.
But Eddie Hui Chi-man, a professor in the Hong Kong Polytechnic University's Department of Building and Real Estate, said the policy could be hard to implement because the primary market differed from the secondary market.
The spokeswoman said: 'EAA understands that there may be practical difficulties in requiring estate agents and their clients to sign an agency agreement at first-sale sites.
'For example, they might be able to visit a show flat in the development, but not the one they intend to buy. EAA is looking into these problems and is consulting the trade on the issue. There is no timetable on when the requirement will be implemented,' she said.