Real Estate Services Act
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BCREA’s Position on the Real Estate Services Act

BCREA believes that changes to the practice of real estate must be made with care to avoid unintended negative consequences, enhance consumer protection and reflect the dynamic nature of the real estate profession.

The Association has suggestions for all 28 of the recommendations made by the Independent Advisory Group, and the following three priorities:

  1. Limited dual agency
    The proposal to ban the practice of limited dual agency without considering the impact on consumer choice, small communities, commercial practitioners or established professional relationships could result in an increasing number of consumers choosing to act without professional representation, rather than engage the services of licensees. BCREA strongly recommends that limited dual agency still be allowed through express consent by all parties.

  2. Administrative burden on brokers
    Multiple recommendations from the Independent Advisory Group propose measures that would have a cumulative and significant impact on broker workload, without getting to the heart of the matter. More effective and consistent oversight by managing brokers is a key component of enhanced consumer protection, and BCREA proposes a comprehensive examination of brokerage issues to find the best solutions that still support competitive diversity and consumer choice.

  3. Council composition
    Council members are appointed, instead of elected. We strongly support transparency, and the appointment of individuals who are thoroughly familiar with the practice of real estate in BC and who have current industry experience and expertise.

Government Action

On November 15, the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) announced changes to real estate practice under the Real Estate Services Act. The changes will come into force on March 15, 2018. The changes will ban limited dual agency and require enhanced disclosure procedures, and will also require all licensees to complete education relating to the new rules. OSRE's news release.

On June 28, 2016, the Independent Advisory Group (IAG) published a report with 28 recommendations in the areas of transparency and ethics, compliance and consequences, governance and structure and licensee and public education. The recommendations are intended to improve consumer protection.

The next day, the provincial government announced that it supported the IAG recommendations and would end self-regulation by appointing a dedicated Superintendent of Real Estate. On July 28, amendments were made to the Real Estate Services Act (RESA), making provisions to implement many of the IAG recommendations. Those changes took effect on September 30, 2016.

On September 6, 2017, the government announced draft rule changes under the Real Estate Services Act. These include a ban on limited dual agency, except in remote locations with few licensees. Stakeholders and the public provided feedback, including BCREA (see below for BCREA's submission). Notice and supporting materials.

In response to the draft rule changes, BCREA compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions on the proposed limited dual agency ban. Read more here.