In a couple of our recent blog posts, we have noted the trend of chronic underquoting by some agents in Sydney.
As this news article explains, the State of Victoria is currently working to stamp this out. Victorian home sellers could be forced to publish their reserve price under proposals discussed in June to stamp out underquoting.
The Real Estate Institute of Victoria was summoned by Consumer Affairs Victoria boss Claire Noone to discuss ways to stopagents who deliberately underquote.
Under new laws from 1 January 2010, if you’ve done pre-purchase inspections, paid for pre-purchase advice (any pre-purchase costs you’ve incurred), and at the auction it turned out the reserve price was higher than the ad said, you are entitled to get everything you spent back. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission also said home owners would face fines up to $220,000 for underquoting.
It would be terrific for buyers if the new laws in Victoria would also be adopted in NSW – as underquoting practices in this State is just as serious as those taking place in Victoria.
About Oliver Stier
Oliver J. Stier is the Director of OH Property Group, a leading Sydney buyers agency. He studied Quantitative Economics and Finance at Cambridge University (UK), University of Toronto (Canada) and Princeton University (USA). In addition to being a licensed real estate agent, Oliver also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.