Breakaway Realty is Independently Owned and Operated
The following complaints process is to ensure that the practice rules and standard of conduct together with clients care for all Breakaway Realty Licenses are to be in place when carrying out real estate agency work. These procedures are not an exhaustive statement but are set as a minimum standard that all Breakaway Realty Licenses must observe and are a positive reference point for our prospective clients, clients and customers.
Real Estate Agents Act (Professional Conduct and Client Care) Rules 2009
In-House Complaints and Dispute Resolution*
Under section 10, information about complaints notes that:
- An Agent must ensure that there are written in-house procedures for dealing with complaints and dispute resolution.
- A Licensee must ensure that prospective clients and customers are aware of these procedures before they enter into any contractual agreements.
- A Licensee must also ensure that prospective clients, clients and customers are aware that they may access the authority’s complaint process without first using the in-house procedures; and that any use of the in-house procedures does not preclude their making a complaint to the authority.
“Act” means Real Estate Agents Act 2008
“Agent Licensee” means a real estate agent who holds, or is deemed to hold, a current licence as an agent under the Act.
“Client” means a person who has entered into an agency agreement and on whose behalf an agent carries out real estate work.
“Complainant” means a customer, prospective client, or client.
“Complaint” means a verbal or written complaint about a Licensee who is carrying out real estate agency work.
“Customer” means a person who is a buyer or a potential buyer of land or a business.
“Licensee” means an agent, a branch manager, or a salesperson who holds or is deemed to hold that current license status under the Act.
“Prospective Client” means a person who is considering or intending to enter into an agency agreement with an agent to carry out real estate work.
“Rules” means Real Estate Agents Act (Professional Conduct and Client Care) Rules 2009.
- When a complaint or dispute is received in a verbal or written format it must be acknowledged by the agent licensee within two working days either by a verbal communication or a written communication by the agent licensee with the prospective client, client or customer.
- The complaint or dispute is to be categorised into a standard of professional competence and it should be determined if any Rules of the Act have not been complied with.
- In addition the Agent Licensee should determine the complaint or dispute under section 72 and 73 of the Act.
- The Agent Licensee is to then determine if there has been any further breach under the Act or the Rules.
- The Agent Licensee should attempt to resolve the complaint or dispute with a written response to the complainant with a solution to rectify the situation within a specified time period and ensure that this is delivered to the complainant within no longer than five (5) working days.
- If the Complainant is not satisfied with the solution offered by the Agent Licensee then the option should be given to the Complainant to put their solution in writing within a specified time period so that it may further be investigated and another written response either accepting the solution or providing an alternative solution should be provided within no longer than five (5) working days of receipt of the Complainant’s solution by the agent licensee.
- If the complaint or dispute has been dealt with to the satisfaction of the Complainant then they are to sign acknowledgement of the completion to the complaint and this is to be maintained on the file or a period of no less than 12 months.
- If the Complainant is not satisfied with the outcome they must be advised that they can make a further complaint and request a dispute hearing or may complain to the Real Estate Agents Authority without the outcome of the in-house procedures being taken into account.
- If the Complainant chooses to have a disputes hearing then the Agent Licensee shall agree to conduct such a hearing within no longer than ten (10) working days advising in writing the location and time of where the hearing is to be conducted.
- The Complainant must be allowed to have a representative (1) attend the hearing. The Agent Licensee may also have a representative (1) attend the hearing.
- The Agent Licensee must appoint an arbitrator/s who has/have not less than 5 years’ experience as an agent licensee to hear the dispute and propose a recommended outcome. This recommended outcome must be in writing and given to both parties within ten (10) working days of the hearing.
- If the dispute has been dealt with to the satisfaction of the Complainant then they are to sign acknowledgement of the completion to the dispute and this is to be maintained on the file for a period of no less than 12 months.
- If the Complainant is not satisfied with the dispute hearing they must be advised that they may complain to the Real Estate Agents Authority without the outcome of the in-house procedures being taken into account.
- If it is noted that the Licensee has breached section 72 or 73 of the Act then the Agent Licensee has a duty under section 7 of the Rules to report this Licensee to the Authority.
- In addition if there has been a breach of section 72 or 73 of the Act then the Agent Licensee must report the Licensee to Breakaway Realty within no longer than five (5) working days.
*The Complainant needs to be aware that there may be a responsibility by the Agent Licensee to report the complaint and or dispute to the insurers of the Agent Licensee under the policy which is held by the Agent Licensee. If this is the case the Agent Licensee will advise the complainant and refer the matter to the insurance company which may override these procedures.