The Property Occupations Bill 2013 will come into effect in late 2014 and it’s important to understand the implications of this Bill on the Queensland Property industry. The Property Agents and Motor Dealers Act 2000 (QLD) (PAMDA) will be split and replaced with legislation specific to the property industry. Essentially there will be four Bills in which PAMDA will be split; The Property Occupations Bill 2013 being just one of them.
This aims to simplify the interpretation of contracts under PAMDA and streamline the contractual obligations for each party. Ideally the outcome for this will mean less unnecessary litigation and will make complying with the requirements of the legislation much easier.
Changes in Effect
• 30C Warning Statement & Form 14 Information Sheet
This will be replaced by a simple statement above where the buyer signs the contract. Instead of allowing the other party to terminate the contract if this requirement is not met, heavy penalties (in the way of monetary fines) will be applied.
• Cooling Off Period
The cooling off period can now be shortened or waived by the buyer by giving relevant notice to the vendor. Terminating under the cooling off period is also easier; the buyer need not have to specify which section under the contract or have the notice dated.
• Real Estate Agents; Licensing
The license categories for Real Estate Agents that exist now will be consolidated from nine to three. Also, the Registered Employee category will be encompassed in one group as opposed to the current four.
• Property Developers
Property developers and their employees no longer need to be licensed. This move aims to increase new or first time developers entering the industry as well as promoting employment opportunities. Queensland is the last state to adopt this line of regulation.
• Real Estate Agents; Commission Structure & Beneficial Interest
The cap on agent’s commission has now been removed. This will allow for greater variance between agencies and give the consumer more competitive choice. Where agents have divulged a beneficial interest in a transaction, they can now receive commission (providing the seller has agreed) on this transaction.
• Agent’s Disclosure to Buyer
Buyers will no longer receive the details of an Agent’s commission; it is a matter of privity of contract and will remain at the discretion of the Agent and Vendor.
• Related Entities
Where an entity is acting in relation to the real property of a related entity, the consumer protection protocols will no longer be relevant. This will cut complications in transactions where there is no risk to a consumer.
• Residential Letting Agents
Residential Letting Agents will now be allowed to manage more than one building and will allow them to live off-site, if they so wish.
This is a brief overview of some of the amendments, if you would like to discuss how these or some of the other amendments may affect you please contact us at our Mooloolaba office. Miller Sockhill Lawyers are a Sunshine Coast based law firm with offices in Mooloolaba practicing extensively in property law.