Will NSW & VIC escape price guide bans?

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Fears that New South Wales and Victoria will be subjected to price guide bans, following the adoption of such a law in Queensland on Wednesday (May 7), are mounting.

As reported by Your Investment Property [http://www.yourinvestmentpropertymag.com.au/news/dday-looms-for-queensland-price-guide-ban-law-185305.aspx], heated debate has characterised the passage of Queensland’s price guide ban through parliament.

This week Queensland Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie said the controversial ban was designed to prevent “price baiting” or underquoting by real estate agents – which he claimed were a big problem in other states.

Reports immediately began to circulate about the possibility of a ban being adopted by New South Wales and Victoria.

Both NSW Fair Trading and Consumer Affairs Victoria told media that, despite public perceptions, underquoting was not considered a serious problem.

REINSW CEO Tim McKibbin said the reports were baseless and he could not envisage such a ban in New South Wales.

“We just can’t see the NSW government making the same mistake. It is our view, that once the Queensland government goes down this path and test drives the policy, they will be forced to repeal it.”

The ban was not the solution for the issue the government was trying to address, he added.

Queensland’s solution to the problem was ridiculous, agreed Good Deeds Property Buyers principal Veronica Morgan.

However, the laws around underquoting did need to be simplified and tightened up, Morgan, who is also the co-host of Location Location Location, said.

“An agent has to put something on the agency agreement. I don’t understand why they can’t quote that. If they quote what is on the agency agreement, that’s more transparent than anything else.”

Meanwhile, it should be noted that the Queensland ban legislation passed with amendments for websites. The amendments allow those searching online to use a price range to find properties within their budget.

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