The Ontario government has announced proposals to strengthen consumer protection for real estate transactions and two industry bodies have been quick to commend the move.
The government announcement - which was expected following the Fair Housing Plan published earlier in the year and a consultation over the summer - says that if passed, the legislation would
“Introduce stronger rules and professional standards in the real estate sector, including new measures to address conflict of interest issues that arise in multiple representation situations and heavier fines for Code of Ethics violations by real estate professionals.”
Reacting to the announcement, the Ontario Real Estate Association welcomed the proposed Mandatory Designated Representation (MDR) model and said it would set a North American leading standard for transparency and enhance clarity of the duty of Realtors.
“These new rules are some of the strictest in North American when it comes to transparency and consumer protection,” said Ontario Real Estate Association President-Elect David Reid. “Ontario Realtors were pleased to work with the Government to bring more clarity to the duties of a Realtor to a consumer and address any real or perceived conflict of interest.”
On tackling unacceptable behaviour by real estate agents and brokers, OREA CEO Tim Hudak added: “Right now, too often fines amount to a mere slap on the wrist. Ontario needs much stronger deterrents for unethical behavior and a regulator that isn’t afraid to throw the book at the small number rule breakers.”
The Real Estate Council of Ontario also welcomed the announcement as regulator of the industry and said it was a step towards implementing stronger protection for consumers.
The full proposals are available on the Ontario government website
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