Real estate agents are no closer to learning how proposed national licensing rules – which are due to be implemented in less than eight months - will affect them, with the body responsible for releasing the draft rules unable to say when they’ll be released.
The draft rules, or regulation impact statement (RIS), were originally due for release in July this year. This was later pushed back to October.
A member of the Council of Australian Governments’ (COAG) National Licensing Taskforce told Real Estate Business earlier this week the delay would not alter the implementation date.
“National licensing will still commence from July 2012,” the spokesperson said.
“Following the provision of policy advice from industry advisory committees, which included advice from the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA), consultation regulation impact statements (RISs) and draft regulations are currently being developed for the four first wave occupational areas – property, electrical, plumbing and gas-fitting, and refrigeration and air conditioning,” the spokesperson said.
“Once these are finalised there will be a six week public consultation period, and submissions addressing issues canvassed in the RISs will be welcome.
“The Decision RISs will be completed after the consultations. The new national licensing authority will be located in Sydney and board members will soon be announced.
“Updates are available at www.nola.gov.au.”
A spokesperson from the REIA told Real Estate Business that it was “working with government to ensure that standards are maintained in the implementation of national licensing for the real estate profession.
“National licensing is expected to commence in less than12 months (1 July 2012) and it is imperative that standards are not lowered.”
Real Estate Institute of Australia CEO Amanda Lynch said earlier this year that national licensing is the biggest issue facing the real estate agent industry, and the government must appreciate the need for a fair and equitable system that mandates high standards of education and ongoing professional training.
“This is a fabulous opportunity to set a benchmark that’s high, and that can add to the industry’s reputation and protect consumers at the same time,” she told Real Estate Business in August.
Ms Lynch said while draft legislation was yet to be completed, the industry had concerns the government may remove the requirement for ongoing education and training.
This would undermine existing education requirements, she said.
Ms Lynch said some agents were already unhappy with the standard of education provided by some training companies.