Good agents across New South Wales are appalled at recent reports about the fraudulent actions of a dishonest few that have brought dishonour on the entire profession. REINSW CEO Tim McKibbin said the profession is as outraged by this conduct, if not even more so, than the general public.
“These people, who represent a very small minority, have brought the whole profession into disrepute as consequence of their actions,” Mr McKibbin said.
“However, with the current regulatory environment, these issues will continue because there is not a sufficient level of professional oversight in the market.
“REINSW have given government a proposal to partner with NSW Fair Trading to deal with issues before they become problems like this.”
REINSW Deputy President John Cunningham said there is no place in agency practice for this type of conduct.
“The removal of individuals who have breached not only their legal obligations but their professional obligations is high on REINSW’s agenda,” Mr Cunningham said.
“While we will never stamp out fraudulent conduct completely, our co-regulation model, working with government, will vastly improve the conduct of real estate agents and deliver on consumer expectations for the profession.
“Our proposal, which has been put to Minister for Fair Trading Stuart Ayres, replicates how other professions work with their regulators. It is essential to proactively address issues before they become problems.
“Our proposal will provide a level of accountability and professional oversight that follows the tried and tested approach that prevention is better than cure.
“NSW Fair Trading, with its recourses, is only able to become involved in the conduct of agents when they have transgressed. REINSW wants to become involved in conduct issues before they become a problem.
“We also need to dramatically increase the education component required to enter the profession and commit to the continued development of real estate professionals after they have entered the industry.
“No one is more committed to cleaning up the industry than REINSW and we believe our solution is the way forward. It is time for the NSW Government to listen to our cries and implement our proposal. We do not wish another repeat of the eight years it took of lobbying by REINSW for the introduction of professional indemnity insurance,” Mr Cunningham said.