New real estate regulatory body in effect today

UE, 17 NOV 2009 6:34A.M. : As supplied by

A new body to keep an eye on Real Estate Agents comes into force today.

The newly established Real Estate Agents Authority replaces the former in-house system to deal with complaints.

Among the many changes, the REAA will allow property buyers and sellers to look up industry licensees on a public register.

The register will outline when the agent was first licensed and whether they have had any disciplinary action against them in the last three years.

The REAA take over from the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) as the regulatory body of the industry.

REINZ will now become a membership service and it welcomes the new Act, the national president, Peter McDonald, told the NZPA.

“It’s an opportunity for the real estate industry to lift its public perception.”

Chief executive of Ray White Carey Smith is welcoming the new legislation.

The new Real Estate Agents Act creates an independent Disciplinary Tribunal to deal with serious cases, which will have the ability to order the cancellation of licences and award up to $100,000 in compensation.

Real estate agents will have new responsibilities such as providing more information to consumers and they are no longer required to be members of REINZ.

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