The days of seeing ‘offers over’ next to a property’s price listing could soon be gone in NSW, as the state government prepares to crack down on agent underquoting.
Offers-over campaigns will become illegal in New South Wales under new legislation that is about to hit parliament.
Minister for Better Regulation Victor Dominello said a bill aimed at cracking down on underquoting will be introduced this week.
Under proposed changes to the Property, Stock and Business Agents Act 2002, agents will no longer be able to use ‘offers over’ or ‘offers above’ or similar statements in their marketing.
Another major reform will force agents to provide evidence of their estimated selling price to the vendor, and to then include this estimate in the agency agreement.
Agents will only be allowed to use the estimated selling price in the agency agreement when marketing a property.
If an agent makes a written or verbal statement about the likely selling price during a campaign, this must match the estimated selling price listed in the agency agreement.
Agents will also be required to keep a register of prices quoted on a property, whether these are provided to the vendor or prospective purchasers.
Anyone caught breaking the law will not only be liable for the current penalty of $22,000, but will also have to forfeit any fees from the sale.
Mr Dominello said these new rules would ensure better consumer protection.
“There have been no successful prosecutions made under the current act in over 13 years – this reform is long overdue,” he said.