Navigating legislative changes for NSW agents

“It comes back to consumers. They want to know that the person they’re dealing with has the skill set to walk them through those valuable steps of owning their own home.”

Editors Note (s): Things can change pretty quickly in politics! This interview was recorded on Tuesday 18/2 and since then a couple of significant changes have taken place:

1. Previously Fair Trading advised that only one licensee in charge could be nominated for a business from 23 March. This has now been revised to allow corporation licensees to continue to nominate multiple licensees in charge if it chooses to do so. Corporation licensees who wish to nominate additional licensees in charge, or change their licensees in charge from 23 March 2020 can complete the Licensee in Charge Nomination form. You’ll need to send your completed form to propertylicensing@customerservice.nsw.gov.au by 5:00 pm on 1 March 2020.

2. At the time of recording, only approved industry associations and government agencies were approved by Fair Trading to deliver the new ‘mandatory CPD’. It was announced this morning that other organisations, such as RTOs, can now apply for approval by completing the application form found on Fair Trading’s website.

We will continue to update information as it comes to hand, but for the latest and greatest, please continue to check the links to Fair Trading noted below.

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The Hon Kevin Anderson MP was appointed the NSW Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation in April last year following the re-election of the Berejiklian-Barilaro Government.

The Minister oversees a broad range of regulations that affect the day to day operations of business in almost every Australian industry.

Over the last 11 months, the Minister has been working in consultation with the real estate and property industry on reforms in NSW to improve accountability, transparency and professional standards to strengthen the sector.

March 23 will see the implementation of these reforms, which include the changes The Property Stock and Stations Act and the Residental Tenancies Act.

Some of the topics I discussed with the minister include:
  • His background, including his time in journalism
  • Door knocking and his election campaign, including his firsthand tips for agents pounding the pavement in search of listings
  • Changes to the Property Stock and Stations Act 2002 including
    • The new rules of disclosure and how the “pub test” might work
    • Separating the sales trust from the property management trust and how this might affect new business models where there is no trust account or an outsourced provider
  • Licensing and CPD changes
    • The rules around the Licensee in charge, and who takes over in the event of a misadventure
    • The minister answers the question of whether the industry is at risk of losing talent as a result of the requirement for everyone to become licensed
    • The concerns that have been expressed by RTOs outside the real estate reference group and REINSW
  • The minister’s wish for peace over conflict (in relation to the REINSW leaving the Reference group and lobbying for a separate property commissioner)
  • Changes to the Residential Tenancies Act, including rent increases, lease break clauses and provisions for domestic violence victims.
  • How the minister sees the future of the real estate industry.

Connect with Kevin Anderson MP:

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Samantha McLean

Samantha McLean is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of Elite Agent and Host of the Elevate Podcast.