Using the services of a real estate agent means that you are protected by law. In fact, the Real Estate Brokerage Act and various organizations regulate the real estate agent profession, which means that services provided to consumers must be both ethical and competent.
Moreover, real estate brokers obtain certification from the Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec (OACIQ) only after receiving basic training and passing a rigorous exam.
In this way, you can have peace of mind that you are receiving services from a highly-trained and well-regulated professional.
In addition, real estate brokers must:
- are required to verify all information used to promote a property for sale. For instance, they must verify that the description and measurements are accurate;
- must avoid conflicts of interest;
- must participate in professional development activities to update their knowledge and skills within an increasingly complex environment;
- use the latest version of the mandatory forms.
Real Estate Brokerage Act
The primary aim of the Real Estate Brokerage Act is to protect the public. It provides for numerous mechanisms and tools as well as certain rules relating to the brokerage contract between the broker and the client who wishes to sell a property. These rules are similar to several of the regulations found in the Consumer Protection Act.
Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec
Created by the Real Estate Brokerage Act, the Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec (OACIQ) is mandated to protect the public by regulating the activities of all real estate professionals. It ensures that brokers carry out their activities in compliance with current laws and regulations. It is also responsible for administering the exam that leads to certification and the mandatory professional development program. OACIQ has a Public Assistance Department to help consumers file a complaint or report a breach of ethics when a transaction has gone wrong.
Fonds d’indemnisation du courtage immobilier (Real Estate Brokerage Compensation Fund)
All real estate brokers contribute to the Fonds d’indemnisation du courtage immobilier. The fund was set up to compensate consumers in the event of a problem in a transaction such as fraud, dishonesty or the misappropriation of funds or property.
Professional Liability Insurance
Real estate brokers must hold professional liability insurance, which ensures that consumers have additional financial protection in cases of fault, error, negligence or omission. This insurance covers civil claims and actions. For more information, visit the website: Fonds d’assurance responsabilité professionnelle du courtage immobilier du Québec.