Currently there is plenty of live debate about the role of the property manager in the commercial sector. Lots of individuals have long term experiencing with managing commercial buildings, negotiating leases and working alongside real estate agents. Despite protestations, it sounds like they are now caught by the Real Estate Agents Act. And it sounds like for many of them they have been caught unawares.
This is how the law works:
- If you carry on agency work you must have a licence
- Agency work means work done in trade, for someone else, to bring about a transaction
- A transaction includes a lease (but doesn’t include a residential tenancy).
That catches a lot of people.
Last year the Ministry of Justice looked at whether property managers needed to be regulated further and decided they didn’t. The Ministry did acknowledge that the Real Estate Agents Act would restrict service providers dealing with commercial property to lawyers, conveyancing practitioners and agents. That state of play is open to review. Nathan Guy, the Associate Minister of Justice is expecting a report from the Real Estate Agents Authority in February 2011. It will be about any complaints or queries regarding commercial property managers . I would encourage those who want to change the status quo to have their say by then too.