The High Court has confirmed the Real Estate Agents Authority's power to seek a wider range of information about people applying to become agents

The High Court has confirmed the Real Estate Agents Authority's power to seek a wider range of information about people applying to become agents

The Real Estate Agents Authority has welcomed a High Court decision that clarifies what information it can request from the police when conducting background checks on people applying for real estate licences

The court has ruled that as well as being able to request information about any criminal convictions an applicant may have, the authority will also be able to request information about pending charges against applicants or any discharges without conviction they received or charges which resulted in diversion.

However the court also put some limits on the information the Authority could request in relation to pending charges or those that resulted in diversion or discharge without conviction.

The Authority will only be able to request information on those matters if the charges were serious enough to allow the defendant to elect trial by jury or if they carried a maximum penalty of $10,000 or more.

The REAA will be able to request this information whenever someone applies for or seeks to renew a licence as a real estate salesperson, agent or manager.

The High court made its decision after an existing real estate agent, Luke Domb, sought to limit the information the REAA could request to details about criminal convictions and not wider criminal history, when it considered whether someone was a fit and proper person to hold a licence.

The REAA argued that a broader range of criminal history information was relevant when making a fit and proper person assessment, to ensure consumers were protected.

According to the REAA a previous decision of the Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal determined that while the REAA  could ask applicants for the broader information,  it could not require them to provide it.

The REAA said the latest High Court decision made it clear that the REAA can require applicants to provide the information.

"We want to make real estate transactions safe for everyone involved, so it is important that we have all the relevant information about any criminal history, before deciding whether they can enter or stay in the real estate industry," REAA chief executive Kevin Lampen-Smith said.

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They need to be after the behaviour of the individual as outlined in the NZ Herald this morning. The public might be very surprised as to how many complaints are being heard by the REI Authority. Or maybe not.

It amazes me that people don't know how much their properties are worth within 20k or so. It's not rocket science. If you see you have a sign, a TradeMe listing and scheduled open homes you can't go wrong. Fire any REA who suggests tendering.

Because not everyone is so mind numbingly obsessed with property as some of the people on this forum.

"It amazes me that people don't know how much their properties are worth within 20k or so"

Agree. Whenever I have sold a house I have always asked the same question of myself and that is "what would I pay to buy my own house". Only once have I been proven wrong in my own assumption of what my house was worth and that was in 1990 property downturn. selling price has always been within $10,000 of what I Would have bought it for and that has been without any comparisons just on gut feeling. If I lived in Auckland now I think I would have to classify myself as a soothsayer to guess what any house was worth because it's bloody madness there.

Woman's intuition huh? Did you sell by negotiation or auction, agent or privately? So you did no research whatsoever as to house prices in your area? No agent advice?

Hey Zach I found this video clip for an auction that was concluded last week. Let me know what you think. Cheers.

Looks like 39% over CV. I assume a concrete house. An outstanding display of confidence in a central Auckland property. Interesting how it went on the market at the final bid. I wonder if the buyer was one of Jack Ma's friends?

These changes would not affect a relatively successful agent that I know of. I in fact help provide evidence of benefit fraud, this agent claiming the DPB when she was in fact living De Factor. The $90,000 was repaid, so criminal charges avoided. I don't know that this agent would commit a fraud now given her success, but she will always been tempted....

Err, a lot of the articles here are about real estate. But imagine you are selling your car, wouldn't you check TradeMe for similar models/mileages to give you an indication? It would appear that one couple sold their house for over 500k less than what it was worth because they didn't spend half an hour checking TradeMe or take the time to attend the odd local auction.

Words spoken from someone that understands greed and doesn't understand trust, sad for you my friend.

You have actually hit the nail on the head when you write about trust. I cannot be a trusting soul in a world of declining trust. This is almost the core of my philosophy when I write about 'riding the tiger over the ruins of the British Empire'. The spirit of the empire, when they had trust in themselves and in the future lies in ruins. The historical stream is broken because of mass migration and Britain joining the EU. The only way to survive is to play the game, ride the capitalist tiger, but of course if you step off the tiger you will be eaten just like that retired couple who sold their home to the unscrupulous agent.
Weird I know but it gets me through the day. However there is a sense of the broken social contract don't you think? I sensed it when I first heard someone say, "No one owes you a living" which was common when I was young and which I thought strange and not right, I thought there should be a stronger contract than what that statement suggested.