CREA Office Closed for Labour Day |

The Canadian Real Estate Association’s (CREA) office will be closed on Monday, September 6 for Labour Day and will reopen on Tuesday, September 7.

CREA’s Member Experience Centre will not be available on Monday, September 6. CREA WEBForms® support will be available from 8 a.m. until midnight (EDT). 

If you have any questions, please direct them to support@crea.ca prior to Friday, September 3.

Have a safe and happy long weekend.

Concerns about steering based on commission

It has been brought to our attention that some real estate agents and brokerages in Ontario may be steering their buyer clients toward listings where the seller is offering buyer representatives higher commissions over those offering lower commissions. We are concerned that this may be happening without the buyer’s informed instruction. 

The behaviour is a breach of the Code of Ethics under the Real Estate and Business Brokers Act, 2002 (REBBA), and must stop. In addition to being illegal, the conduct undermines consumer protection, consumer confidence and the reputation of the real estate profession as a whole.

If you have evidence that a RECO registrant is violating the Code of Ethics, we encourage you to file a complaint with RECO here.

The practice of steering can result in severe penalties, including fines as high as $50,000 for individuals and $100,000 for brokerages. In particularly serious cases, RECO could revoke registrations. The rules are clear that registrants have an obligation to inform buyers of properties that meet the buyer’s criteria without regard to the amount of remuneration.

Clarity for buyers and their representatives

To add clarity to the buying process and eliminate steering, registrants can do the following:

  • Clearly describe in the representation agreement the general description and geographic location of real property being sought.
  • Actively work to understand the buyer’s needs and properly capture the attributes of the property requirements throughout the search process.
  • Include in the representation agreement clear terms about the remuneration, if any, to be paid by the buyer, and how the buyer’s financial obligations to their brokerage may change depending on the remuneration being offered by the seller, if any.
  • Explain to the buyer the terms of payment and the impact of purchasing a property where the seller may be offering less than the amount agreed for the buyer to pay their brokerage.
  • Explain to the buyer that all properties that meet their criteria will be presented. Confirm in writing the buyer’s instructions on how the brokerage is to present properties to the buyer and whether they are to identify those that will require payment by the buyer to their brokerage.

RECO expects all registrants to comply with all sections of REBBA, including the Code of Ethics, and to be mindful of the federal Competition Act, 1985. We are hopeful that all real estate professionals will support us in driving home the expectation of professionalism and zero tolerance for unethical behaviour in the real estate industry.

Please review the following applicable sections of the legislation:

Code of Ethics

Obligation to inform the buyer of properties

19. If a brokerage has entered into a representation agreement with a buyer, a broker or salesperson who acts on behalf of the buyer pursuant to the agreement shall inform the buyer of properties that meet the buyer’s criteria without having any regard to the amount of remuneration, if any, to which the brokerage might be entitled. O. Reg. 580/05, s. 19; O. Reg. 539/20, s. 4.

Unprofessional conduct, etc.

39. A registrant shall not, in the course of trading in real estate, engage in any act or omission that, having regard to all of the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded as disgraceful, dishonourable, unprofessional or unbecoming a registrant.

REBBA

Remuneration

36 (1) All remuneration payable to a brokerage in respect of a trade in real estate shall be an agreed amount or percentage of the sale price or rental price, as the case may be, or a combination of both. 2013, c. 13, Sched. 3, s. 2; 2020, c. 1, s. 24 (1).

Percentages

36 (2) If the renumeration payable in respect of a trade in real estate is expressed as a percentage of the sale price or rental price, the percentage does not have to be fixed but may be expressed as a series of percentages that decrease at specified amounts as the sale price or rental price increases. 2002, c. 30, Sched. C, s. 36 (2); 2020, c. 1, s. 24 (3).

Prohibition

36 (3) No registrant shall request or enter into an arrangement for the payment of any remuneration based on the difference between the price at which real estate is listed for sale or rental and the actual sale price or rental price, as the case may be, of the real estate, nor is a registrant entitled to retain any remuneration computed upon any such basis. 2020, c. 1, s. 24 (4).

Thank you,

Joseph Richer Registrar 

Reminder: Changes to REALTOR.ca DDF® Data Feeds

Important reminder: changes have been made to REALTOR.ca DDF® data feeds.

For years, REALTOR.ca DDF® has made it easier for REALTORS® to showcase listings on their personal website through data feeds. 

In 2020, a whopping 650,000 leads were sent to listing agents through our growing network of high-profile REALTOR.ca DDF® partner sites such as Bing, TD Bank, Scotiabank and Kijiji.

Due to the technical nature of setting up these data feeds, most REALTORS® enlist a technology provider’s help to set up and maintain the data feeds on their website. More than 650 technology providers currently work with REALTORS® across Canada and have access to data feeds, and supporting services, with no associated fees. 

To ensure we continue to offer the best—and only—national data feeds to our members, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) introduced a tiered pricing model for technology providers to access feeds and supporting services. The pricing model is structured to allow technology providers of all sizes to continue to provide their services to REALTORS® without interruption. This pricing model also better aligns with current market standards for data services and will allow CREA to provide REALTOR.ca DDF® data feeds for the long term. 

On April 1, 2021, CREA introduced Phase 1 of its new fee structure for technology providers operating more than 51 data feeds. We are now moving into Phase 2 which will commence on October 1, 2021, focusing on technology providers operating 50 or fewer data feeds.

Please note: data feeds are still and will remain free to members. Charges will only be applied to technology providers, as per the new pricing model.

By introducing new charges to technology providers, we understand your members may be impacted through increased service prices or technology providers choosing not to provide service anymore. 

In the rare case of disruptions or rate increases, we have a complete list of technology providers who can ensure your members’ website can continue receiving listings from REALTOR.ca DDF®.

CREA will continue to invest in REALTOR.ca DDF® improvements such as providing geocodes for all data feeds.

We’re here to help. Please contact our Member Experience Centre at support@crea.ca with any questions.

REALTORS® Prepare to Vote Amid Rising Home Prices

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) continues to support your success with leading industry tools and resources to help you provide the best service to your clients

Canadian Home Sales Continue to Normalize In July
While the average sale price for homes in Canada is up 15.2% from this time last year, the number of new listings is down 18.9% year-over-year and has a reached a decade low. Download our July market snapshot for the latest insights.
Download Snapshot
Share our snapshot graphics on social media using #CREAStats to highlight your market and encourage your clients to act. Save the graphics to your device now to get started: 
Upcoming Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS) Courses
Opportunities in the global real estate market are growing annually both inbound with foreign investment in Canada, and outbound with Canadians looking to invest globally. If you actively practice outside of Canada, we recommend you take a CIPS course to learn about the unique intricacies of the global real estate market.
Explore REALTOR.ca Insights
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Check out the latest REALTOR.ca insights to find out what potential buyers are searching for in your city! Did you know that 25% of users in Toronto are between the ages of 25 and 34? Or that 40% of visitors in Vancouver are first-time home buyers? Find out more about your city’s potential buyers

Read more here: http://view.comms.crea.ca/?qs=a024da0526f4e730f0feae0dd2dd3a933c6113eea6c609830855c05ec52bcc0f7bd0a24566176286c7c8701de2b0871ba1198f5b15047078a1cba13d6c18ab3ccfa097f49462bed8ad75f84dfa4a750a

OREA YPN and BREB collaboration

The YPN Master Series is BACK and we can’t wait for next week’s episode. We’re diving deep and discussing how to manage multigenerational differences in real estate, navigating the stereotypes that young REALTORS® face, tips on how to appeal to clients when you’re just starting out and SO much more. Register today at https://www.orea.com/Special-Pages/ZoomWebinarRegistration-YPN-Managing-multigenerational-differences-in-real-estate.

We appreciate your support and look forward to working with you.

Thank you and have a wonderful day,

Julie Beckstead

Manager, YPN

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T: (416) 445-9910 | E: JulieB@orea.com  

99 Duncan Mill Road | Don Mills, ON M3B 1Z2

Let’s Connect! |  @OREAinfoOREA Year in Review

CREA Office Closed August 2

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) office will be closed for the Civic Holiday on Monday, August 2 and will re-open on Tuesday, August 3.

On Monday, August 2, the Member Experience Centre will be running emergency on-call support for boards and associations between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. (EDT). CREA WEBForms® support will be available until midnight (EDT). 

If you have any questions, please direct them to support@crea.ca prior to Friday, July 30.

Have a safe and happy long weekend

OREA guidance on safe open houses

Real estate open houses are permitted this Friday, July 16, under Step 3 of Ontario’s Roadmap to Reopen.

We know that a large portion of Ontario REALTORS® are in no hurry to start hosting open houses. Digital tools, virtual home tours, and in-person scheduled showings have proven effective over the last year, and REALTORS® should continue to rely on these tools and practices to help their clients buy and sell homes.

Open houses should be used as a last resort to market a home and only employed at a seller’s request and with the seller’s approval.

OREA’s number one priority is to protect the health and safety of our REALTORS® and their clients. With that in mind, we have crafted guidance for OREA Members on conducting safe open houses in Step 3 of Ontario’s Roadmap to Reopen.

OREA’s guidance includes:
 

  • Provisions Members are required to follow under the Provincial regulations;
  • Key questions to ask yourself & clients; and
  • Practices you can utilize to operate an open house in Step 3.

Here’s what’s covered in our guidance:

  • Request self-screening of COVID-19. Post signage on the property entryway door stating that if people have been ill, have symptoms of COVID-19, have come in contact with a person with symptoms or a confirmed case of COVID-19 they should not enter the home.
  • Set a time limit. Limit the time each group spends inside the residence to ensure all guests have the opportunity to see the home during open house hours.
  • Set a limit on guests. While indoor gathering limits have increased, limit the number of people in the house to a maximum of three people (including the buyer’s sales representative if they are attending with the buyers), to allow for physical distancing.
  • Require PPE use. Ensure masks or face coverings are worn inside at all times, as physical distancing may not always be possible. Consider providing this PPE outside the entrance of the residence. Municipalities may have by-laws regarding the use of masks where business is being conducted. Be sure to review any such by-laws in your municipality.
  • Manage the flow of traffic. If a line forms outside, people should be staggered 6’ apart. Consider signage or markers to this effect. In the home, plan and direct safe traffic flow by considering an alternate exit to the entrance and posting signage informing guests of the traffic flow through the home. Have an assistant manage physical distancing outside and inside the home and for people registering. While a showing is in progress, place a sign on the door to indicate that and ask other guests to wait in a queue or their cars.
  • Sanitize hands before and after. Provide hand sanitizer at the door and require guests to disinfect before entry.
  • Ensure proper ventilation. Where possible, ensure that the property’s AC unit has been turned on, or open windows to ventilate the space.
  • Enforce ‘no touching’ rules. Open all the interior doors and closet doors and turn on lights so that any open house visits can be completed without touching these surfaces. The listing REALTOR® should be available to open cabinets, storage spaces, blinds, etc.
    • An alternative is to provide gloves as people enter the home so guests can touch without the risk of outside germs. If this alternative is used, all other steps outlined in this document still need to be taken out of heightened precaution.
  • Sanitize. Disinfect surfaces, door handles and parts of the house that guests come in close contact with both before and after the open house.
  • Protocols for multi-tenanted properties. For multi-tenanted properties like condominiums, discuss with the seller whether building management has any COVID-19 safety protocols to be aware of and incorporate those into your plan. Also, enlist the help of an assistant to manage entry to the building and other common area, and ensure physical distancing can be maintained between consumers in common areas.

To read OREA’s guidance on safe in-person showings click here.

To sum up, open houses should be used as a last resort to market a home and only employed at a seller’s request and with the seller’s approval. As we move into Step Three of Ontario’s Roadmap to Reopen, we trust that our Members will continue to put health and safety first while doing what you have always done best – helping Ontarians achieve the dream of a place to call home.

I am so proud of the leadership REALTORS® have shown in protecting Ontario communities. On behalf of OREA’s Board of Directors – thank you, and please stay safe.

Sincerely,

David Oikle
OREA President 

Guelph Sign Bylaws are Changing

July 14, 2021 | 10 – 11 AM | Via Webinar
Hosted by Mark MacKinnon, Real Estate Broker and Guelph City Councillor

If you use any type of real estate sign within the City of Guelph, you won’t want to miss this important session since it will directly impact your business.

As of July 19th 2021, Guelph will be passing a new Sign Bylaw that will affect the size, placement, timing, and material of real estate signs throughout the city.

As real estate professionals, we play an important and valuable marketing role for our clients; it’s vital that we understand the city’s sign rules, so we can maximise property exposure while simultaneously ensure bylaw compliance.

Mark has brought his real estate industry perspective to Guelph Council decision-making for the past six years, and he is hosting a virtual meeting for GDAR’s membership in advance of the final sign bylaw vote both to provide information and to listen to REALTOR® concerns.

REGISTER NOW

Register early, spaces are limited for this informative presentation.  A $5 cancellation fee will be charged to those who register and fail to attend without providing 24 hours notice to hub@gdar.ca.