Earlier this year the Queensland Government repealed the Property Agent and Motor Dealers Act 2000 (“PAMDA”) and brought in the Property Occupations Act 2014 (“Act”) to replace it. This new piece of legislation brings with it a raft of changes to property lawin Queensland, a few of which we have highlighted before. As we edge closer to the time in which it comes into play we thought we would revisit this topic and highlight a few addition changes to the way property is bought and sold and what this will mean to buyers and sellers of residential property.
PAMDA was a complicated piece of legislation, full of red tape, which resulted in a lot of uncertainty, court battles and difficult transactions. The new Act aims to simplify the process of buying or selling a residential property.
A few of the major changes that the Act will implement include:
- The repeal of the Warning Statement (Form 30C) and the BCCM Information Sheet (Form 14), with now only a requirement for certain wording to be included in the Contract immediately above the location of the Buyer’s signature.
- Failure to include this wording does not allow for termination of the Contract, but it is an offence for which the seller and/or its Agent may be liable for, with a penalty of up to $22,000 being imposed.
- The ‘no cooling off’ that applies to a property sold at auction will be extended to apply to registered bidders for up to two days after the property is passed in at auction.
- The standard ‘cooling off’ period of 5 days in residential transactions will be able to be waived or shortened by the buyer without a lawyer’s consent by providing notice to the Seller only.
- The definition of ‘residential property’ has been simplified to property “that is used or intended to be used for residential purposes.”
- The is to be a reduction in the number of categories of real estate agents, with property developers and their employees no longer being required to be licenced.
- The amount of commission that may be paid to an Agent for the sale of a property will no longer be capped and can be freely negotiated between the relevant parties.
- This amount can now also remain confidential between the Seller and their Agent.
- There will also be major changes to the management rights industry, with residential letting agents gaining the ability to manage more than one building complex and there will also be no requirement for them to live onsite.
What do these changes mean?
Generally all of the changes listed above will simplify the entire process of buying or selling residential property in Queensland. Contracts will have to be carefully drafted though taking into account these new changes as soon as they come into force.