Real estate agents could face fines of up to $22,000 and risk losing their commission as part of a NSW Fair Trading underquoting audit program.
Fair Trading compliance staff are conducting shopfront inspections and auditing sales records with agency agreements entered into after the new underquoting laws were brought in on 1 January 2016 to ensure they comply.
This follows on from the work Fair Trading did with industry stakeholders on agent education and a previous program in January 2016 reviewed more than 5,000 advertisements.
The reforms aim to provide clarity for buyers, sellers and agents and ensure a fair and level playing field for all concerned.
A NSW Fair Trading spokesman said: “We recognise there can be significant consumer detriment if the advertised or stated price of a property is not a reasonable estimate of its likely selling price.
“Prospective buyers can spend money and time investigating properties based on the advertised or stated value.
“Agents found to be breaching the new laws face fines of up to $22,000 and risk losing their commission.”
The first week of the program, which started on March 7, targets agents in Sydney metropolitan locations.
The second week will focus on major regional centres including Wollongong, Newcastle, Dubbo, Orange, Wagga Wagga, Albury, Tamworth, Armidale, Grafton, Coffs Harbour, Lismore and Ballina.