Legal reforms herald new era for Queensland real estate.

The Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) has welcomed landmark property and real estate reforms passed by the Queensland Parliament.

The long awaited split of the Property Agents and Motor Dealers Act has resulted in the creation of industry specific legislation, including the Property Occupations Act.

REIQ chairman Rob Honeycombe said the simplified laws would deliver important benefits for both real estate professionals and consumers.

He said the Property Occupations Act and other associated legislation passed today would cut red tape and make it easier to buy and sell real estate throughout Queensland.

“The REIQ has been fighting for industry-specific legislation for many years on behalf of our members and for the betterment of the entire profession in Queensland,” he said.

“Previously, the real estate sector has long been legislatively bundled in with a variety of other occupations and the REIQ always felt that our profession deserved its own specific legislation.

“The new laws will also empower consumers as never before, making it easier than ever for them to navigate the entire spectrum of real estate transactions.

“We’ve consulted extensively with our own members and the State Government to help shape this new set of laws which herald a new era for real estate in Queensland.”

The majority of the changes reflect policy positions of the REIQ, and include:

  • Removing the requirement for agents to disclose to a buyer the commission the agent is receiving from the seller;
  • Extending the statutory limit on lengths of appointments for a sole or exclusive agency from 60 days to 90 days to better reflect market realities;
  • Deregulating the maximum commissions rates to allow contractual freedom ;
  • Abolishment of a separate Warning Statement instead this will be included in the relevant contract; and
  • Stricter disclosure of third party benefits to buyers.

REIQ CEO Anton Kardash said the landmark reforms would provide much-needed simplification and clarification for real estate agents and consumers alike.

He said he was impressed by the government’s willingness to actively engage with the REIQ as the true authoritative voice for the Queensland real estate profession.

“These reforms will deliver a number of positive changes for the real estate sector and they’ll definitely be welcomed by our members,” he said.

“They’re also a win for consumers, who are going to enjoy greater transparency in situations where they’re looking to buy a property at auction.

“The amended laws governing auction price guides reflect longstanding REIQ policy and we’re pleased the government has also incorporated feedback from other industry players on this issue.”

Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said the Property Occupations Act would allow Queenslanders to purchase property without the unnecessary burden of red tape and regulation that previously existed.

“Buying a house is one of the biggest decisions we can make in our life time and the simpler we can make the process, the greater Queenslanders are protected,” Mr Bleijie said.

“Lengthy contracts can often do more harm than good, with many people either skimming over important information or in some cases people not reading the finer detail at all.

“Through splitting the previous Act into industry specific Acts, respective industries can perform more effectively because they will have legislation which is tailored to their business.

“This is a win-win for all Queenslanders.”

Source: News Release Real Estate Institute of Queensland 07 May 2014

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