A state institute is pushing for an overhaul of education standards to improve customer service and minimise industry turnover.
The Real Estate Institute of NSW (REINSW) has called for substantial improvement to initial and ongoing training in a submission to a Fair Trading review into education and training.
REINSW submission said that one of the flaws of the current regime is that practically no one fails. This has increased competition but has diluted the aggregate skills and competencies of the profession to the detriment of consumers, according to the submission.
“Because new entrants to the profession are poorly trained, they quickly discover in practice their inadequacies to respond to the reasonable expectations of the consumer and leave the profession disheartened,” the submission said.
“The institute respectfully suggests that a higher entry level education standard not only better equips the new entrant for the profession, it also allows that new entrant the opportunity to commit themselves to the disciplines required by the profession.”
REINSW noted that states such as South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania represent more fitting industry models since they exceed the entry and licensing requirements in NSW.
According to REINSW, there are numerous providers of ‘quickie courses’ that allow people to gain their licence quickly without adequate training or experience.
“All consumers that the institute deal with are amazed to learn that someone can complete the requisite education to be a real estate agent in a few days,” the submission said.
“It is the institute’s submission that to be eligible to apply to the regulator for a real estate licence the applicant will need to have completed their Diploma in Property Services.”
REINSW also said agents who wish to own and operate their own business should demonstrate at least two years of experience working for a licensed business.
The institute said it has been campaigning for more than 10 years to raise industry education standards.