During my over 20 years as a real estate Broker I have seen a great deal of change not only within our profession but also in the manner in which properties are bought and sold in Ontario. During this time I have and continue to volunteer in a number of roles within both our profession as well as in the community at large.
One of my volunteer positions has been to sit on the Standard Forms Committee at the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA). This OREA Committee is responsible for drafting and revising as needed, the various real estate forms/documents that we use in real estate transactions across Ontario. As a result of my past work and contributions, I was both pleased and proud to learn that I have been selected to sit on this OREA Committee once again in 2022.
As of this year, I have now been a member of the OREA Standard Forms Committee for 9 of the past 10 years. Overall it has been a very rewarding experience working with a handful of real estate colleagues from across the province along with OREA staff as we respond to changing market conditions and in some cases to the legal requirements that are brought forward from both the provincial as well as federal government.
Unbeknown to many and in particular consumers, there are over 200 forms that we as REALTORS® use across the province of Ontario to list and sell properties. Contrary to what you might see on the various real estate shows on television, properties are not listed and or sold via a handshake, word of mouth or over the phone. Everything that both REALTORS® and consumers do and or agree to must be in writing. Perhaps I am a closet lawyer but I am a stickler for detail and for following to the “letter,” the provincial law and “Code of Ethics” that we as REALTORS® must adhere to. Doing so is not strictly for the benefit of our profession. More importantly it is essential and of critical importance for consumers, the very clients that we serve.
As REALTORS® in Ontario we are licensed under provincial law. In the months ahead, the province will be implementing Bill 145, the Trust in Real Estate Services Act 2020 (TRESA). This new Act will amend the current Real Estate Business Brokers Act 2002 while is now 20 years old. Under this new Act which is slated to take affect April 1, 2023, there will be some significant changes most of which, will strengthen consumer protection and raise consumer confidence in the real estate sector and I will speak to these matters in future posts.
This year the Standard Forms Committee may well have a heavier workload than normal. Ultimately many of these changes brought forth by TRESA will require revisions to some of the existing forms/documents that are currently used in real estate transactions throughout Ontario. In addition I fully expect that some of the requirements in the new Act may well necessitate drafting some new forms/documents entirely.
In conclusion, I am looking forward to my continued involvement working on this Committee in the months ahead. There is no denying that we are in an era of change and many of the forthcoming changes will be of benefit to our valued real estate clients and more importantly to Ontario consumers overall and nothing could please me more.