New Bill Target to Fight Real Estate Fraudster.
The Estate Agents registration Board (EARB) is planning to set tough penalties for quacks who operate in the real estate without a license. The Estate Agents Act Cap 533 Laws of Kenya stipulates that it is mandatory for all Real Estate Agents (persons who deal with the selling, purchasing or letting of buildings or land should be registered with EARB and issue with operating certificate. Anyone claiming to be a realtor and operates without the practicing certificate is, therefore, violating the law and will be fined Ksh .20, 000. The regulator has acknowledged that the current penalties are not tougher, therefore, the need for tougher penalties to eliminates quacks operating as real estate agents.
According to a survey by EARB, there are only 700,000 registered real estate agencies have been registered since the body was formed in 1989. The regulator estimates there more than 40,000 unregistered firms that operate as real estate agencies.T he regulator believes that tough regulation will scare away the quacks operating in the industry. The new laws will help in ensuring professionalism is restored in the real estate industry.
The amendment is aimed at streamlining the real estate industry by guaranteeing that only professional realtors will be allowed to sell real estate products.
If the amendment is is approved and accented into a law, anyone seeking to operate as a real estate agent/broker must at least have a KCSE certificate. The current law only requires a Certificate of good conduct to register a real estate agent. To be issued with real estate practising license you will also be required to have at least one year working experience working at a registered real estate firm.
Individual caught violating the law by practising real estate agency illegally will be fined a penalty of Ksh. 1million. the new amendment also states that individual who will operate as real estate agents without operating license will not be paid for services rendered.
The regulator and professional realtors are pushing for this law to streamline the real estate industry and ensure that consumers are protected from fraudsters.