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REAA - The Update
  November 2013

Welcome to our final newsletter for 2013. We turn four on 17 November, it is hard to believe that it has already been four years and that we are almost at the end of another year.

We held a Regulator's Forum on 8 October in Wellington. This forum is attended by franchise heads and REINZ and is an opportunity for us to meet face to face with members of the industry to update them on our activities and discuss areas of interest. The main topic for discussion was legal updates on the definition of real estate agency work, disclosure, skills and serious negligence. We also discussed the work we are doing with REINZ on the development of some clauses that would be required to be included in all agency agreements. These are intended to deal with the transition from one agency to another when an agency ends or is cancelled. We hope that introducing clauses that provide clear rules around transition will reduce the risk of double commission as well as reducing the disputes that occur between agents. You can get a copy of our presentation here.

Trade Me have recently announced they are changing their listing fees and have suggested that vendors be charged $199 + GST which allows for a 20% commission for agents. If you do decide to pass this cost onto the vendor and to charge a commission, please remember that you are required to disclose any rebates, discounts and commissions as part of the agency agreement.

We have just started trialling a new way of dealing with less serious complaints. We are using specialist skilled facilitators to work with complainants and licensees to try and resolve complaints quickly and without them having to be referred to a Complaints Assessment Committee. This is a three month trial which we believe will benefit everyone involved in the complaint process.

The Authority is now on Twitter and LinkedIn.  On Twitter follow @REAANZ and you can find us on LinkedIn by looking for REAA (under companies and in New Zealand) or just click on the icons to the right.

Finally, we have two special contributors to this newsletter so make sure you read what the Commerce Commission has to say about minimum price guide advertising and the article from amlAssurance.com on why real estate has just become more attractive to criminals for money laundering.

Merry Xmas and we wish you all a safe and happy New Year.


Kevin Lampen-Smith Kevin Lampen-Smith

Kevin Lampen-Smith
Chief Executive/Registrar



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  Taking care when using minimum price guide advertising
The Commerce Commission advises that care needs to be taken when using minimum price guide advertising techniques.

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  Legal Battlegrounds - key issues for the Authority and the industry
Our Legal Counsel, Martin Sawyers, has been travelling the country over the last few months giving presentations on the key legal issues the Authority and the Industry are facing.

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  'Exemption' from new laws increases licensees' risks
An article from amlAssurance.com on why real estate has just become more attractive to criminals for money laundering.

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  Auctions - raising the reserve and withdrawing the property from auction
A recent Tribunal decision has provided some guidance to the industry on auction best practice.

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  Time is running out to complete your 2013 continuing education
With less than two months to go before the end of the year please make sure you have completed your 2013 continuing education.

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  What does New Zealand think about its real estate industry?
Earlier this year we did some research to help us understand consumer perceptions of the real estate industry and the results show that not only is awareness of the Authority improving but so is what they think of their real estate agent.
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  Please do not reply to this newsletter. If you wish to contact us please call us on 0800 for REAA (0800 367 7322) or 04 471 8930 or email us at info@reaa.govt.nz