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Mar 142014
 

To Steve Minnikin
State Member for Chatsworth, Millennium Drv, Carindale QLD 4152

Price Guide Legislation For Auctions

auction-legislationDear Steve,

As our local State representative for Queensland, I would like to ask for your help in preventing a ridiculous piece of legislation being passed in State Parliament very soon.

The proposed legislation relates to agents and auctioneers not being able to give price guides to prospective buyers. We can be fined heavily if we do. Auctioneers will also be prevented from announcing that a property has reached reserve price and is ‘on the market and will be sold’.

As a local real estate agent and auctioneer, I and a huge number of my colleagues strongly object to this legislation and our reasons are very simple. I have asked hundreds of buyers lately who have come to my open homes and auctions what they think of the suggested legislation and they are annoyed and frustrated. Everyone has the same view; ‘All we want is a rough guide, is the property in the $400,000s, or $500,000s. We don’t want to waste our time on a property that is out of our price range.’

As a well respected and successful real estate agent and auctioneer, I take great pride in being transparent, helpful and honest. Unlike some agents who try and lure as many buyers to an auction as possible, even if they are not in the right price range, I like to give my buyers an honest guide of where a property is likely to sell. This could be as simple as ‘low to mid $700,000s’, or ‘mid to high $400,000s’. This allows buyers to decide if the property is in their price range.

If an agent does not give a buyer a price guide, buyers regard the agent as being secretive, underhanded, or a bit of a smart arse! Our industry needs to be more honest, helpful and transparent to buyers and sellers.

I know most politicians are confused that the legislation was proposed by our own industry representative – the REIQ. Unfortunately the REIQ is quite often out of touch with its members and not representative of what its members really want. This does create a quandary for politicians.

I hope this simple feedback helps you understand that this legislation would set our industry back years as far as building some honesty and credibility in the community. Let’s move forward, not backwards in the best interest of the buyers and sellers in the Queensland property market.

I have asked some of my colleagues in our office to join with me and sign this letter to highlight to you the concern your local constituents have on this issue.

Kind Regards

Glenn Millar
Remax United Vision

Glenn Millar has lived and worked in the Carindale region for 20 years. He is a real estate agent at Remax United Vision in Carina. Glenn has had many years experience of buying and renovating properties in the local area and is also an ex money market trader. He is the founder of the Carindale and Eastern Suburbs Community Group which meets once a month at Pacific Golf Club, Carindale. He has a wide network of local contacts from tradespeople to community groups making him a great local source of knowledge. Glenn is a member of the Lions Club of Camp Hill - Carindale and of Mens Shed Carina. He is a major sponsor of the Belmont Services Bowls Club (Carina) and involved with feeding the homeless with Mama Renes (based in Carindale).
Glenn Millar
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Glenn's website

  6 Responses to “Open letter re auction legislation”

  1. I find this interesting and also misleading comments by Steve Minnikin MP. Firstly under the current legislation, price guides in QLD can be used, if a vendor instructs an agent to do so. So shouldn’t it be a decision that is made by the vendor and their agent, if they wish to use price guides… or not!
    Secondly this new proposed ban will also extend to properties being listed on property portals such as realestate.com.au and domain.com.au
    Buyers will not be able to search for properties in a price range that is affordable to them.
    Give all the facts Mr. Minnikin please!!!

  2. Good evening Glenn

    As promised I have represented your views to the Attorney – General and Minister for Justice as per my email on Wednesday 12th March 2014.

    In regards to concerns about legislative changes regarding price guides for auctions, I wish to outline a few points regarding this important issue.

    In the state of Queensland price guides for auctions have been banned since 2006, when the previous Labor Government amended the legislation.

    These legislative amendments were introduced because of concerns by agents and consumers about deliberate misquoting of prices in an attempt to draw people to the auction day.

    Also in terms of the overall PAMDA review, the LNP Government has been consulting extensively over a year now, which has included the release of draft bills in February 2013. The LNP Government has taken into consideration views expressed around the use of pricing information on portals/websites.

    Ultimately the LNP Government wants to have a framework that protects consumers whilst reducing red tape for agents in Queensland.

    Please contact my electorate office on 07 3398 4777 or via email chatsworth@parliament.qld.gov.au if you wish to get further clarification.

    Kind regards

    Steve Minnikin MP
    Member for Chatsworth
    Assistant Minister for Public Transport

    • Dear Mr Minnikin

      I would like to correct some of the misinformation in your post.

      Price guides for auctions under the current legislation in Queensland are not currently banned. They are simply discouraged. Agents who receive written permission from vendors at the start of their campaign to use price guides can make them available to buyers throughout the campaign.

      This is very different to the proposed legislation that seeks to impose hefty fines upon agents who even dare discuss price with potential buyers of auction properties.

      The bulk of the proposals in the new legislation do cut red tape and are to be commended – however the articles in the bill around price guides do exactly the opposite and are widely opposed.

      More than 1800 people have signed a petition opposing the price guide elements of the legislation at a petition that can be seen here:

      http://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/jarrod-bleije-mp-amend-proposed-legislation-aimed-at-banning-price-guides-on-properties-going-to-auction-in-qld

      If the LNP is serious about reducing red tape for the industry and working to improve the property market for both buyers and sellers in Qld, it needs to remove this one element of the legislation that contradicts its stated objectives.

      Yours Sincerely
      Kylie Davis
      Network Real Estate Editor
      News Corp Australia

      • Good afternoon Kylie,

        I would just like to correct a couple of your statements. Under the proposed legislation, agents are able to discuss price guides with buyers as long as they have the consent of the vendor. There are no hefty fines for that at all.

        Also, the experience of other jurisdictions around the advertising of price guides has been about increased red tape for agents and increased complaints by consumers who, for example, attend an auction with a stated price guide of $400,000 – $500,000 and then opening bids commence at $550,000.

        We want to encourage price transparency for buyers, without any misleading information that leads to consumer complaints and additional red tape for agents.

        Kind regards

        Steve Minnikin MP
        Member for Chatsworth
        Assistant Minister for Public Transport

  3. As a prospective buyer, I concur with Glenn’s thoughts. I don’t want to waste my time on houses that will be outside my price range. I may not know the price range but someone in the industry would. All I’d want is some sort of guide.
    To ban pricing suggestions is ridiculous. I assume the new law is to guard against some in the industry who have done the wrong thing. However, buyers need to beware, and most in the industry assist. We just got rid of a nanny government. This is Australia, and Australian’s will simply ignore ridiculous rules.

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