KUALA LUMPUR (March 2): The Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents (MIEA) has urged the public to use the services of registered real estate agents or negotiators to help develop and strengthen the industry.  

“Currently, we have about 2,000 registered real estate agents and about 27,000 registered real estate negotiators. Meanwhile, we have probably double the number of unregistered agents and negotiators. Illegal agents are certainly one of the major challenges we need to solve,” said MIEA president Eric Lim at a press conference after the official launch of the Malaysian Annual Real Estate Convention (MAREC’ 18) here today.

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He also urged the public to not use services of illegal real estate agents and negotiators to minimise risks while buying property.

“We heard complaints from homebuyers dealing with unregistered brokers. Unfortunately, we cannot do much because they (illegal brokers) are not registered with us. What we can suggest is to make a police report.

“However, if you are dealing with a registered agent or negotiator, should you have any complaint, you can always go to the registered agency or to the board to seek help,” Eric added.

Meanwhile, MIEA president elect Lim Boon Ping added that there is a sign that illegal agents and negotiators are gradually reducing in numbers from four years ago, when registration of agents was made compulsory for registered agencies.  

“Compared with four years ago, we’ve seen an improvement of the number of registered agents and negotiators, but the illegal brokers are still pretty active in the market,” Boon Ping said.

On the other hand, MIEA vice-president of education and training Kelvin Yip said the board is trying to raise awareness on the importance of agents and negotiators registering themselves with the board.

“MIEA is organising seminars and talks every month in different MIEA branches to create awareness on the need for agents and negotiators to get themselves registered.”

Themed “Embracing Changes with Innovation”, MAREC’ 18 was officiated by deputy finance minister Datuk Lee Chee Leong today.

“I have been informed that there is still a considerable number of illegal estate agents and this is a great cause for concern as the law clearly states that only registered estate agents and real estate negotiators can do real estate transactions. In this respect, the government is losing millions in revenue and I urge all parties from the Board of Valuers, Appraisers, Estate Agents & Property Managers, MIEA and all stakeholders concerned to get together and find remedial measures to combat this issue,” said Lee in his speech at the official launch.

Besides dealing with illegal estate agents, convention chairman Tan Kian Aun also said the real estate sector is bracing itself for more challenging market conditions ahead in 2018.

“One of the challenges is the changing of ways we do things. The theme reflects the true challenges of the industry. The landscape of the real estate segment is rapidly changing, so rapid that it will overtake us without us noticing. We have no choice but to embrace it, hence embracing changes must be part of our life,” said Tan in his opening speech.

The first day of the event saw about 300 attendees from all over the nation plus representatives from the US, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia and Philippines.

EdgeProp.my is one of the digital media partners of the event.

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