Proposals for cleaning up a haphazard industry

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 17 August, 1994, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 17 August, 1994, 12:00am

Estate agent's licence APPLICANTS for an estate agent's licence must meet the following requirements: Meet a minimum age requirement as specified by the regulatory authority.

Be considered fit and proper. For example, they should have no record of criminal conviction or complaints that, in the view of the regulatory authority, render them unsuitable to be an estate agent.

Have demonstrated to the satisfaction of the regulatory authority a good understanding of the rules of conduct and practice prescribed by the regulatory authority.

Prove to the satisfaction of the regulatory authority that they have a minimum standard of competence, knowledge and experience necessary for carrying out their duties.

Corporation licence A CORPORATION which operates an estate agent business must first obtain a corporation licence.

The working group recommends that a corporation should have a licensed estate agent in effective control, and a licensed estate agent should not be an officer in effective control of more than one business or office.

Salesman's licence TO differentiate a real estate salesman from other employees of an estate agency, the working group recommends that the duties of a salesman should be clearly defined in legislation.

A salesman should be defined as somebody whose duties as an employee of an estate agent include: Introducing a prospective buyer or lessee to a seller or lessor of a property on behalf of his employer.

Induces or negotiates with any person to buy, sell or lease a property.

Exemptions THE working group recommends the licensing legislation should not apply to Government departments. The regulatory authority should have power to exempt certain organisations, for example, the Housing Society, or classes of persons from licensing.

Licensee Register THE regulatory authority should keep a register of licensed estate agents and salesmen, and a register of those whose licences have been suspended and revoked. Those registers should be available for public inspection.