VIC Government; Make it compulsory to advertise auction reserve prices to stamp out under quoting.
This petition had 414 supporters
Buyers in Victoria and interstate are frustrated with being misled about property prices and needlessly spending thousands of dollars on unnecessary building and pest inspections and contract reviews when attending auctions.
In addition, Consumer Affairs Victoria ‘Guidelines for real estate salespeople; price advertising and underquoting’ are also frequently not adhered to across property being advertised for sale by auction.
This practice results in prices being substantially below what the agents knows the property to be worth based on recent sales evidence, and what they know the vendor will accept. This is called underquoting and it leads buyers to think they have the ability to buy property within their budget, when in fact it is often well and truly above what they have to spend or can afford.
Efforts to crack down on underquoting to date have failed and Consumer Affairs Victoria does not have the manpower or the skills to police the problem to the extent necessary to have a real impact in shutting down the deceptive practice. In addition the process of reporting underquoting by consumers is onerous and there is no accountability for CAV to report back to complainants about complaints lodged.
This is why we are advocating for greater transparency via legislative change to compel a vendor’s reserve price to be declared in writing across all marketing materials (print and electronic) from the commencement of the marketing campaign.
This will enable buyers to be informed about whether or not they wish to proceed with investing time, emotion, energy and money into potentially purchasing the property. It will also ensure for vendors, that genuine buyers attend the auction, reducing the reliance upon despised ‘vendor’ bids to create momentum before or during an auction, while also reducing the chance of the property being passed in at auction.
It’s time for buyers to take a stand against misleading and deceptive practices that are not only grossly unfair, but continue to bring the real estate industry into disrepute and support the mistrust that consumers have towards real estate professionals, perpetuating our ranking as one of the least trustworthy professions in Australia.
If you believe in greater transparency and that reserve pricing should be declared from the commencement, and for the duration of the marketing campaign, please sign and share this petition.
Miriam Sandkuhler, John Keating, David Morrell, Christopher Koren, John Spragg
Licensed Estate Agents
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