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License Registry

Public Register of Licensees

The public register is a database of all licensed real estate agents, branch managers, sales person’s and companies in New Zealand under the Act. The purpose of the register is to identify the license status of such persons or companies operating in this capacity within this industry. The opportunity to confirm these details should be taken prior to your consideration for commissioning their services or products by searching the Register of Licensees.

The Public Register Records

The information held on all licensees is comprehensive and completely transparent in all respects. Such details are open to public access as follows:

  • the full name of the licensee and any other names they are known by
  • the licensee’s business address
  • the current licensee contact details
  • the registration number allocated to the licensee by the Registrar
  • the class of licence held
  • the date the licensee’s name was entered in the register
  • the date of expiry or renewal of the licence
  • any disciplinary action taken in respect of the licensee in the last three years, including suspension of a licence
  • whether any mandatory continuing education has been completed by the licensee

License Holders

To be eligible for a salesperson’s licence you must:

  • be at least 18 years of age
  • not be prohibited from holding a licence under section 37 of the Real Estate Agents Act 2008
  • be a fit and proper person
  • have a prescribed qualification

The following persons are not eligible to hold a licence:

  • A person who has been convicted, whether in New Zealand or another country, of a crime involving dishonesty (or of a crime that, if committed in New Zealand, would be a crime involving dishonesty) within the 10 years preceding the application for a licence.
  • A person whose licence or certificate of approval has been cancelled within the preceding 5 years or whose licence is suspended under the Real Estate Agents Act 1976 at the time of application.
  • A person whose licence has been cancelled within the preceding 5 years or whose licence is suspended at the time of application under the Real Estate Agents Act 2008.
  • A person subject to an order made, or a notice given, under the law of a country, state, or territory outside New Zealand, within the preceding 5 years who is prohibited from acting as an agent or branch manager, or salesperson (or equivalent) in that country, state, or territory, unless the person satisfies the Authority that he or she is a fit and proper person to hold a licence.
  • A person who is an officer of a licensee company, a chief executive officer of a licensee company, or a branch manager and who has been disqualified from holding a licence or whose licence has been suspended under the Real Estate Agents Act 1976.
  • A person who is prohibited from being a director or promoter of, or being concerned or taking part in the management of an incorporated body under the Companies Act 1993, the Securities Markets Act 1988, or the Takeovers Act 1993.
  • A company, or other corporate entity or partnership, where a person concerned in its management is disqualified from being licensed in his or her own right under paragraph (a).i. A person who is subject to the provisions of the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act 2006.
  • Should there be a concern about a new applicant or licensee renewal on valid grounds for opposing a license application, a notice of objection is the format for a formal submission in respect to such an application.

Complaints

Unfortunately, this aspect of the business has never been too far from the surface due to the performances of a few that spoil it for the rest. Incidents of dishonestly have formed a portion of this industry’s’ persona over the years, so a substantial part of the Real Estate Agents Act 2008 introduced in November 2009 was the implementation of a new complaints system that provides greater transparency and fair processes for all parties involved in a dispute. All agencies must have a documented process for handling complaints which should provide the quickest way to resolve any concerns at this initial level. Should this not be possible, the issue should be filed directly to the Real Estate Agents Authority siting grounds for complaint under the Real Estate Agents Act 2008.

Complaints can be delivered personally, fax, post or e-mailed directly to the REAA. Contact details are:

Real Estate Agents Authority P.O. Box 25371 – Wellington 6146 Level 2, 10 Brandon Street – Wellington Ph: 0800 367 7322 – Fax: 04 815 8468 Email: info@reaa.govt.nz

Complaints Process

Should any resolve at the agency level not be achievable, the complaint then filed with the REAA will be referred to to a Complaints Assessment Committee. These Committees will have three members; One will be drawn from the Board and at least one member must be a lawyer with no less than seven years experience. All associated parties will be advised on documents received and the progress of the process every step of the way. The Committee will consider the complaint as soon as possible and may decide to take no action if it considers the licensee complained about did nothing wrong or the complaint is inconsequential or was not made in good faith. If the Committee thinks the complaint would be better handled by another agency it can refer the complaint to that agency. If the Committee decides to inquire further into the complaint, it can require the licensee complained about to appear before it to give an explanation. If necessary the Committee can also request any other party to provide further information to enable it to carry out its inquiry.

The Committee will usually just consider the information that it has received and make a decision based on that. One outcome may be that the Committee asks that both parties make use of an alternative dispute resolution process (for example, mediation or negotiation) and report back to the Committee, if it thinks this method is likely to resolve the dispute. If the Committee finds that the conduct of the licensee complained about falls short of what would usually be expected, is unacceptable, incompetent or negligent, or breaches the 2008 Act, regulations or rules (unsatisfactory conduct), it can make one or more of a number of orders including:

The Committee will usually just consider the information that it has received and make a decision based on that. One outcome may be that the Committee asks that both parties make use of an alternative dispute resolution process (for example, mediation or negotiation) and report back to the Committee, if it thinks this method is likely to resolve the dispute. If the Committee finds that the conduct of the licensee complained about falls short of what would usually be expected, is unacceptable, incompetent or negligent, or breaches the 2008 Act, regulations or rules (unsatisfactory conduct), it can make one or more of a number of orders including:

  • censuring the licensee.
  • requiring that the licensee apologises.
  • requiring the licensee to undergo further training or education.
  • ordering the licensee to reduce, cancel of refund fees or fix an error or omission.
  • fining the licensee up to $10,000 if an individual or $20,000 if a company.
  • ordering the licensee to pay costs to the complainant.

If the Committee considers that the conduct is disgraceful, seriously incompetent or seriously negligent, or is a wilful or reckless breach of the 2008 Act, regulations or rules (misconduct), it can refer your complaint to the Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal. http://www.justice.govt.nz/tribunals/real-estate-agents/

The Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal is an independent body that is administered by the Ministry of Justice. The Disciplinary Tribunal is separate to the Real Estate Agents Authority and will consider any charges laid before it by the Committee. It will also hear appeals about decisions on complaints made by the Committee and on application, can review decisions of the Registrar. The Disciplinary Tribunal can impose greater penalties than the Complaints Assessment Committee, these penalties include:

  • cancelling or suspending the licensee’s licence.
  • ordering the licensee’s employment to be terminated and order that no agent employ or engage that licensee in connection with any real estate agency work.
  • requiring the licensee to pay a fine of up to $15,000 for an individual, and up to $30,000 if the licensee is a company.
  • ordering the licensee to pay compensation for actual loss of up to $100,000 to the complainant.

Cause for concern

Unsatisfactory Conduct

A licensee may be found guilty of unsatisfactory conduct if they carry out real estate work that:

  • falls short of the standard that a reasonable member of the public is entitled to expect from a reasonably competent licensee; or
  • contravenes a provision of the Real Estate Agents Act 2008 Act or of any regulations or rules made under the Act; or
  • is incompetent or negligent; or
  • would reasonably be regarded by agents of good standing as being unacceptable.

Misconduct

A licensee may be found guilty of misconduct if their conduct:

  • would reasonably be regarded by agents of good standing, or reasonable members of the public, as disgraceful; or
  • constitutes seriously incompetent or seriously negligent real estate agency work; or
  • consists of a wilful or reckless contravention of
  • consists of a wilful or reckless contravention of
    • the Real Estate Agents Act 2008; or
    • other Acts that apply to the conduct of licensees; or
    • regulations or rules made under the Act; or
  • constitutes an offence for which the licensee has been convicted, being an offence that reflects adversely on the licensee’s fitness to be a licensee

Real Estate Agents Authority – Code of Conduct & Client Care Rules – 2012


REAA Approved Guides

These two documents were introduced as a fundamental component of the required documentation concerning an agency agreement and the sale and purchase contract in New Zealand by the REAA, effective 17th November 2009. They provide clarity and transparency on the rights and expectations from a prospective client’s position and the obligations and consideration that must be followed by a licensee throughout this two stage process. Such information is provided in booklet form and must be delivered directly to any prospective client before any contracts for an agency or the sale and purchase of property are entered into by either party.

The New Zealand Residential Property Agents Agreements Guide

This guide includes information on:

  • what prospective clients need to know before signing an agency agreement
  • what an agency agreement is for
  • what prospective clients can expect to see in an agency agreement
  • what documentation must be present to form a valid agreement
  • what a ‘cooling off’ period is for

An acknowledgement in writing of having received this information MUST form part of the documentation associated with the agency agreement. It must be have the correct names, contact details, property details plus date and signatures by all associated parties.

To preview this document, Click here

The New Zealand Residential Property Sale and Purchase Agreement Guide

This includes information on:

  • what a sale and purchase agreement is
  • the difference between standard and general clauses
  • cancelling a sale and purchase agreement
  • when does a deposit need to be paid
  • information for buyers
  • what to do if there is a problemr

n acknowledgement in writing of having received this information MUST form part of the documentation process associated with the sale and purchase agreement. It must be have the correct names, contact details, property details plus date and signatures by all associated parties.

To preview this document, Click here