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PIPA intensifies fight against property spruikers

By Staff Reporter
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The Property Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA) has continued its push for a more professional property investment industry with a string of new measures and initiatives.

The measures include the launch of a new website and new anti-spruiking advertising campaign, as well as a strengthened fee and commissions disclosure policy for its members.

According to PIPA chair Ben Kingsley, the actions form part of the association’s ongoing pledge to create a more professional property investment industry.

The measures come at a time when property market activity continues to gather pace and interest in property investment via self-managed super funds (SMSFs) heightens.

“Dodgy operators and underhand practices remain an ongoing problem in the property investment industry,” Mr Kingsley said.

“Unfortunately, as long as property investment remains unregulated, Australian investors will remain at the mercy of profiteering property spruikers.

“But PIPA remains dedicated to eradicating unscrupulous practices, and these latest measures are a clear reflection of our strong resolve to do that,” he said.

The new advertising campaign warns investors about the lack of government regulation and the dangers that property spruikers present.

PIPA has also moved to further protect the interests of investors with a strengthened disclosure policy, which requires all new and existing members (upon their membership renewal) to provide documentation regarding their fee and commission disclosure policies, including any arrangements with third parties or other related entities.

With the recent change of government, Mr Kingsley said the association was optimistic that regulation of property investment is one step closer.

“The new Liberal government had expressed concerns over the lack of property investment regulation whilst in opposition, and we are hopeful that the New Year will see some progress made in this regard,” he said.

In the meantime, Mr Kingsley urged investors to conduct full due diligence to ensure they deal with trustworthy operators.

“Do your homework and ask as many questions as you can; firstly with regards to any potential service provider’s property qualifications, and also with regards to fees and commissions – these should always be made very clear to you at the outset,” he said.

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