Poll results: Industry reacts to B.C. ending self-regulation of industry

by REP06 Jul 2016
 It may be the most polarizing issue the industry has seen in a while, with agent sentiment about the upcoming changes to British Columbia’s real estate industry split nearly down the middle.

The real estate industry in B.C. has been shaken up by an in-depth independent review, which has led to Premier Christy Clark announcing the industry will no longer be allowed to regulate itself.

REP readers have had their say and the results are in.

Of those polled, 34% said ending self-regulation is a good thing; 44% argued it’s a bad thing; and 22% are undecided.

Clark says the province will hire a new superintendent of real estate, who will take over the rule-making authority held by the B.C. Real Estate Council.

The announcement comes the day after an independent advisory group tasked with restoring consumer confidence in the industry released a report with 28 recommendations, including hefty fines for misconduct.

Clark says the report shows that self-regulation of the industry must end because consumers are being put at risk and the reputations of honest agents are being tarnished.

For its part, the British Columbia Real Estate Association said, shortly after the release of the independent panel report, that it is ready and willing to play ball with the coming changes.

“The vast majority of the 20,000 Realtors in B.C. do the right thing and we welcome a dedicated Superintendent of Real Estate to improve consumer protection in real estate transactions,” British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) President Deanna Horn said. “Our livelihoods depend on our reputations and I know that almost every Realtor in the province will be happy to see stronger penalties and enforcement for rule-breakers."

Of course, British Columbia won’t be the first province to have its regulation overseen by the government. Manitoba, P.E.I, Newfoundland, and each of the territories are all government-regulated.

With files from Canadian Press.
 

COMMENTS

  • by Scott Simmons 7/6/2016 10:33:05 AM

    The new system as presented in the report is not just about regulating Realtor but also raining in the high volume grey area FSBO operations that have spring up and are basically unregulated at this point in time. Recommendation #20 states these companies should be subject to licensing. I do think this is a very good idea because it seems to me these companies are offering more than a just sign and are offering RE advise.

  • by Mark Ranger 7/6/2016 11:21:36 AM

    The resources we expended in self regulation, now freed up, can be put to a more productive use. We were under regulation up until 2005. Things didn't change much after and I don't expect the will change much with the loss of that self regulation. We have a tarnished image in the eye of the public. I believe this will allow us to move forward and earn more of that public trust back as the public seems to want it this way and they are, after all, our biggest audience. There is a huge contingent of the public that doesn't hold REALTORS® in such high regard and a larger contingent that doesn't believe we can objectively self regulate. I look forward to our relinquishing those duties and redirecting those resources toward those things in the report more of public favour that we can take responsibility for.

  • by Bill Grace 7/6/2016 11:48:45 AM

    If I was a Real Estate Agent in British Columbia I would be trembling in my shoes. In Nova Scotia the Nova Scotia Real Estate Commission oversees the Industry. They do a commendable job. I first came into the Industry when it was managed by a Provincial Government Department. In my dealings with officials of this Department these Officials were probably the two most dishonest people I have ever dealt with in my life. They would not honour their own Administration to the detriment of me and my Family. They just said I did not write the Examination, an Examination I studied for a good part of a year, prior to writing. It could have been because I was fired by one of the larger Real Estate Companies in the Province. I refused to accept the Company's decision to forbid me to write a Column in the local paper on Real Estate, in my own name, on my own time, to further my career. My offer to allow the Company Officials to edit the material was refused, so much for free speech.

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