How should your estate agent comply in order to operate as a fully compliant agency/agent who is entitled to earn commission?

In the previous blog we discussed the knowledge that your estate agent should possess and in the prior edition, the characteristics of a good and professional agent. Today our topic revolves around the current position in South Africa regarding compliance in real estate agencies.

In terms of a notice in the Government Gazette 31225 of 4 June 2008 all estate agents* and estate agency principals** must, as from 15 July 2008 be in possession of the following registered qualifications: FET Certificate: Real Estate (estate agents) or the National Certificate: Real Estate (for principals of estate agencies).

*An estate agent is someone or an agency who undertakes the marketing of real estate for sale or for rental on behalf of a client or the management of immovable property on behalf of a client

A **principal estate agent is any director of an estate agency company, member of a CC, a partner in Partnership, or the Sole Proprietor of an estate agency.

2 years after qualifying, an estate agent must pass the Professional Designation Examination (PDE) set by the Estate Agency Affairs Board in order to be able to use the designation PPRE (Professional Practitioner Real Estate)

The same applies for a principal estate agent who must pass the principals PDE in order to be afforded the status as MPRE (Master Practitioner Real Estate)

In terms of the Education Regulations, all persons seeking to enter the estate agency profession are required, as from 15 July 2008, first to serve as intern estate agents, acting under the supervision of a principal estate agent, for a continuous period of twelve months. This requirement applies to all new entrants, or intern estate agents, regardless of any academic, professional or other qualifications which they may hold.

Once the ‘intern estate agent’ has received his/her FETC: Real Estate, concluded the prescribed practical experiential learning and recorded it in a logbook and written and passed the PDE, the agent can apply to the EAAB for an upgrade to a full status agent.

During this time no agent or principal may operate without either an Intern Fifelity Fund Certificate (FFC), a Full Status FFC or a Principal FFC. The FFC is the ‘licence to practice’ which is issued by the statutory body, the EAAB. The estate agency firm must also at all times be in possession of a valid FFC.

So dear reader, before entrusting the purchase or sale or lease or rental or management of your property to a real estate agency or agent, please ensure that they comply and that you are not dealing with an illegal firm or agent.

PS : Agents who are not in possession of a valid (renewed each year) FFC are legally not entitled to earn commission.

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