On April 1, BCREA and the ten BC real estate boards made a joint submission to the Office of the Superintendent (OSRE) and the Real Estate Council of British Columbia (RECBC) in response to their consultation on regulating real estate teams.
The regulators’ interest in teams came up as a result of OSRE’s research into the role of managing brokers, which began in 2018. The public consultation on teams, which ended on April 2, included a discussion paper and an online survey.
According to the discussion paper, the aim of OSRE and RECBC is to “establish a stronger regulatory framework for real estate teams, by clarifying existing requirements and practices and updating Real Estate Rules and regulatory guidelines.” If changes to the Real Estate Rules are made, another consultation will take place.
In summer 2020, BCREA and the member boards collected feedback about teams from REALTORS® through focus groups. We also gathered additional insights early in 2021 to help inform our response.
Our submission provides additional background about the reasons teams are formed, offers input on the questions asked in the discussion paper and asks several additional questions. We’re particularly concerned with how teams will be defined, especially what thresholds will be used to determine whether licensees operate as teams. For example, will one co-listing indicate team behaviour? How many open houses? How many vacation coverages? Thresholds that are too low could deter mentoring of new licensees and put more licensees at risk of implied agency.
BCREA looks forward to learning the results of the regulators’ consultation and we stand ready to provide additional input. However, we also urged them to delay any Rule changes until after amalgamation into the BC Financial Services Authority (see this blog post for more information) and the new regulatory structure is firmly in place.
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