Ensure you never miss an issue of the
real estate business bulletin
Underquoting regulations nation's "dumbest laws"

Underquoting regulations nation's "dumbest laws"

by Reporter 4 comments

Simon Parker

Regulations in Victoria that ban underquoting by real estate agents are some of the “dumbest laws ever passed in Australia”, an editorial in a major newspaper said yesterday.

“The ban on real estate underquoting is both harmful to society and costs quite a lot of money to enforce - how much is hard to say - and to very little effect,” James Campbell said in the Herald Sun yesterday.

Mr Campbell said Consumer Affairs Victoria’s (CAV) decision to raid the four real estate agents involved in The Block on fears they were underquoting ended in “public humiliation after only one of the houses made it to the reserve price at last Saturday night's auction.”

“Rather than showing the people of Victoria why we need it to protect us from real estate agents who lie, CAV showed why the laws are useless.”

Mr Campbell said CAV's most recent annual report, for the financial year 2008-09, revealed the organisation had inspected and audited 595 real estate agents.

“And the outcome for all this endeavour? In a booming property market it managed to levy fines, penalties and consent orders worth $34,340 and costs orders of $7437,” he said.

“Does that sound to you like a game that is worth the candle?”

“No, the really offensive thing about them is that they treat grown-ups as children who can't cope with being upset,” he continued.

“The adult response to persistent underquoting is to learn to add the sum of $100,000 to any quote you hear out of a realtor's mouth. The adult response is to learn that for their own reasons the guy is going to talk BS to you and to learn to discount it instead crying to mother that a mean man lied to you.

“For the state to step in and assume responsibility for stopping real estate getting your hopes up (or rather to attempt to step in and take responsibility, because as we have seen they aren't doing a very good job of it) is treat us as eight-year-olds.”

Mr Campbell added that recent underquoting had taken place in a buoyant market. Now that the Victorian housing market was deteriorating, he said it was more likely agents would be overquoting.

“Is the government now going to move to ban that too?”

Simon Parker

Regulations in Victoria that ban underquoting by real estate agents are some of the “dumbest laws ever passed in Australia”, an editorial in a major newspaper said yesterday.

“The ban on real estate underquoting is both harmful to society and costs quite a lot of money to enforce - how much is hard to say - and to very little effect,” James Campbell said in the Herald Sun yesterday.

Mr Campbell said Consumer Affairs Victoria’s (CAV) decision to raid the four real estate agents involved in The Block on fears they were underquoting ended in “public humiliation after only one of the houses made it to the reserve price at last Saturday night's auction.”

“Rather than showing the people of Victoria why we need it to protect us from real estate agents who lie, CAV showed why the laws are useless.”

Mr Campbell said CAV's most recent annual report, for the financial year 2008-09, revealed the organisation had inspected and audited 595 real estate agents.

“And the outcome for all this endeavour? In a booming property market it managed to levy fines, penalties and consent orders worth $34,340 and costs orders of $7437,” he said.

“Does that sound to you like a game that is worth the candle?”

“No, the really offensive thing about them is that they treat grown-ups as children who can't cope with being upset,” he continued.

“The adult response to persistent underquoting is to learn to add the sum of $100,000 to any quote you hear out of a realtor's mouth. The adult response is to learn that for their own reasons the guy is going to talk BS to you and to learn to discount it instead crying to mother that a mean man lied to you.

“For the state to step in and assume responsibility for stopping real estate getting your hopes up (or rather to attempt to step in and take responsibility, because as we have seen they aren't doing a very good job of it) is treat us as eight-year-olds.”

Mr Campbell added that recent underquoting had taken place in a buoyant market. Now that the Victorian housing market was deteriorating, he said it was more likely agents would be overquoting.

“Is the government now going to move to ban that too?”

Underquoting regulations nation's "dumbest laws"
lawyersweekly logo
promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
Listen to other installment of the Real Estate Business Podcast
reb top 100 agents 2017

The REB Top 100 Agents ranking is the foremost ranking of agents in Australia. It has set the bar for excellence in Australian real estate. To be ranked as an REB Top 100 Agent is the standard real estate professionals strive for. See the full 2018 ranking here!

featured podcast

featured podcast
The difference between an average agent and one who dominates

McGrath Crows Nest’s Peter Chauncy is number 10 in this year’s REB Top 100 Agents ranking. Peter, however, is more likely not surprised ...

View all podcasts

Would you consider working for Purplebricks or a similar 'DIY' model?

Yes (7.2%)
No (80.9%)
Perhaps - make me an offer (12%)

Total votes: 209
The voting for this poll has ended on: July 13, 2018
Do you have an industry update?