According to Consumer Affairs Victoria, real estate pricing and advertising must not be misleading or deceptive.
“It is illegal for a seller or agent to misrepresent a property in any way when advertising or marketing that property, whether verbally or in writing,” Consumer Affairs writes on its website.
The Consumer Affairs Website States that Underquoting can occur when a property is advertised at a price that is less than the estimated selling price, the seller’s asking price, or at a price already rejected by the seller.
The new laws require every advertised residential property price to be either:
Advertising a property for sale with a price estimate of “more than $X” or “$X-plus” is banned.
Agents and agents’ representatives must provide a “statement of information” to prospective buyers. Statements of information for metropolitan listings must identify three comparable sale results from the past six months within a two-kilometre radius of the property. The statement must also include a median house or unit price for the suburb and an indicative selling price for the property, which must not be less than the listing agent’s estimated selling price or their vendor’s selling price. Agents who sell rural, commercial and industrial properties will continue to comply with Australian Consumer Law rules.
Vendors do not have to tell their listing agent their final sale price until they disclose their reserve on auction day.
If the vendor chooses not to disclose their final sale price to their agent, the agent must use their market experience to price the property appropriately. But if the seller does disclose their final sale price at any point during the campaign, their agent must not advertise the property for less than that amount.
It is illegal for an agent to advertise – in print, online or in conversation – a sale price less than the seller’s auction reserve price or asking price. This practice is the definition of underquoting. Penalties, including fines, apply if an agent is found in breach of this law. Agents must give prospective buyers “accurate opinions of the market price of the property and update the advertised price if it changes during the sales campaign”, according to the new guidelines. If the sale price changes throughout the campaign, an agent must update online advertising within 24 hours and the print advertising the next time it is published.
The difference between selling and selling for a great price is ensuring the right buyers are attracted to your home. It is the job and responsibility of the agent to ensure the vendor is guided through this process carefully to ensure the best outcome for the vendor is realised. Ray White Carnegie agents are highly trained and up to date with all new legislation changes that are now in place relating to the way residential real estate is sold in Victoria and are ready to advise sellers on how to progress with an effective marketing solution to achieve the best result for the property being sold.
Credit- Domain.com.au & Consumer Affairs Victoria