by Tim O’Dwyer M.A., LL.B Queensland Solicitor & Consumer Advocate firstname.lastname@example.org
Reforms Will Interfere With Freedom Of Contract (And Burden Agents And Sellers)
Real estate or conveyancing reforms did not appear in any political promises during the recent Queensland State election campaign. There were none during the previous election in early 2004. Below is part of a letter I wrote at that time to the Premier, Peter Beattie, who remains my State’s election-winning leader. Following this excerpt is the reply I received from the Premier’s then Chief of Staff (with my annotated comments).
Nothing has changed, and I doubt if anything will.
“Now, while pre-election promises and policies abound, it may be time for you to bite the bullet and proclaim the following long-overdue reforms in this area:
- a prohibition on real estate agents’ preparation of real estate contracts;
- a prohibition on real estate agents and their ilk recommending their mates’ legal, financial, inspection and other services to property buyers and sellers (agents should not be allowed to give buyers or sellers so much as a bus timetable);
- a prohibition on conveyancing solicitors acting for both parties;
- mandatory full pre-contract disclosure by sellers to prospective buyers (particularly flood information, details of illegal structures and of approvals and inspections on properties);
- a fair government-prescribed standard real estate contract to replace the disgraceful REIQ/Law Society document.”