Major changes are set to begin later this year in respect of property transactions in Queensland. On 7 May 2014, the Queensland Parliament passed The Property Occupations Act 2014 (‘The Act’), which will replace current legislation, The Property Agents and Motor Dealers Act (commonly referred to as ‘PAMDA’).
The new Act aims to achieve an appropriate balance between the need to regulate for the protection of consumers and the need to promote freedom of enterprise in the market place. It largely reduces red tape that imposes heavy regulation on the property industry and aims to simplify the regulatory requirements that PAMDA presently imposes.
KEY CHANGES CONTAINED IN PROPERTY OCCUPATIONS ACT:
Form 30C Warning Statement and Form 14 BCCM Information Sheet
The requirement that the above forms be attached to the front of the contract will be abolished. As a substitute for the 30C Warning Statement, the relevant contract for sale will only need to include specific wording placed above the section where the buyer executes the contract.
Cooling Off Period
Waiving Cooling Off
Under the new Act, a buyer under a contract may shorten the cooling-off period by giving written notice to the seller of the shortening.
Properties bought at Auctions
Pursuant to PAMDA, residential properties purchased at auctions are not subject to the five day cooling off period. This exemption has been widened under the new Act, and will now include any contracts entered into within two business days of the auction of the property, subject to the buyer being a registered bidder at the auction.
Maximum Commission for Selling Agents
Pursuant to the new Act, provided that the amount of the commission is agreed between the seller and selling agent, the selling agent’s commission will no longer be constrained to a maximum amount. This is a welcome change to real estate agents, due to Queensland being the only state in Australia which currently sets a maximum amount of commission for specified property transactions.
The date of commencement of the Act has not yet been announced, however, it is expected that it will come into effect during September or October this year. Affinity Lawyers would be pleased to assist you with any questions or enquiries you may have relating to selling or buying property in Queensland. Please do not hesitate to contact one of our experienced property Lawyers on the Gold Coast to arrange an initial consultation free of charge.