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Going professional will benefit buyers and sellers

For sale: Listed with LJ Hooker Campbelltown is this Lithgow Street house overlooking Campbelltown on a 911 square metre block.

For sale: Listed with LJ Hooker Campbelltown is this Lithgow Street house overlooking Campbelltown on a 911 square metre block.

Real estate agents across Australia are taking steps to be recognised as professionals, which will see benefits to the consumer, according to the Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA).

“On behalf of its member Real Estate Institutes, REIA has applied to the Professional Standards Authority for admission as a profession,’’ says REIA president Malcolm Gunning.

“The Authority is an independent statutory body established with specific responsibilities under professional standards legislation for assessing and approving applications for, and supervising the application of professional standards schemes.

“For those agents wishing to pursue a professional path, education and training standards will be raised far beyond those currently required for regulatory purposes which will result in significant consumer benefits.

“REIA is completing four distinct and demanding phases as part of the process which is expected to be finalised by the end of 2019,’’ Mr Gunning said.

In addition, there will be a uniform robust code of ethics that participating professionals will need to adhere to and a set of auditable accountability commitments to maintain membership.

“Individuals will need to be members of their state Real Estate Institute and then pass rigorous tests to achieve recognition,’’ he said.

“This scheme will not be for all agents as only those prepared to raise the bar on their own standards, skills, education, performance and commitments will qualify.

“We are forging a new direction for the industry and, as a result, better experiences and outcomes for property consumers.’’

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In other property news, the Reserve Bank of Australia kept interest rates on hold at 1.5 per cent when it held its July board meeting last week.

REINSW president Leanne Pilkington said the hold pattern remains appropriate in the current climate.

“Global economic forces, the widening wage gap between older and younger working Australians, and outcomes of the banking Royal Commission might all impact the RBA’s outlook in the near term,” she says.

“But for now it’s important that interest rates remain steady.”

The RBA cut interest rates by 25 basis points in August and May 2016 and there was no change to interest rates in 2017.

The RBA board will next meet on Tuesday, August 7.

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