Within a matter of weeks, a new legislative landscape for Queensland real estate will hopefully be unveiled by the State Government.
The announcement of the draft new legislation, the Property Occupations Bill and the Agents Financial Administration Bill 2013, has been a long time coming with the REIQ lobbying for many years to have the laborious and overly-complex legislative real estate environment addressed.
The REIQ was extensively consulted by the State Government during this legislative review process and we look forward to again working closely with the government as this new much-improved legislation takes shape.
I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Jarrod Bleijie, for the open and collaborative nature in which he and his department have so far handled the review.
It is also very pleasing to note that the State Government shares the REIQ’s long-held view that professionalism must remain the number one tenet for our sector.
The REIQ sent a detailed submission into the split and review of the current Property Agents and Motor Dealers Act 2000 (PAMD Act) and made recommendations towards increasing the professionalism of the industry, reducing regulatory and administrative burden, and simplifying processes associated with real estate transactions.
Our recommendations included the proposed amendment to abolish the PAMD 30c warning statement to eliminate the administrative burden and risks associated with this document.
Multiple appointment PAMD appointment forms (regardless of the nature of the services to be performed) should also be abolished and replaced with a single simplified appointment form containing only ‘key legislative criteria’.
Also, appointment processes and procedures should be simplified. The current provisions about appointments are unreasonably onerous and put agents at risk of not being remunerated on the basis of technical and minor omissions.
The REIQ also recommended that a seller and landlord disclosure regime be implemented to establish required disclosures related to the sale and rental of property in Queensland. At minimum, we recommended the existing information and disclosure requirements relating to property sale contracts be incorporated into one single document.
Existing legislative provisions which apply to price representations and guides in relation to auction properties and properties to be sold without a price should be clarified in the new legislation. The REIQ expressed the view that no price guides or price representations should be permissible when marketing and/or promoting residential property that is to be sold by auction or with no price.
The Institute also recommended that the maximum 60 day statutory limit relating to sole and exclusive agency appointments be extended to 90 days. The current limit is too short and reappointments are regularly required. This causes inconvenience for both the agent and consumer. An extension of the limit to 90 days better reflects current market conditions.