REMINDER AND EXTENSION OF DEADLINE: SELF-ASSESSMENT OF COMPLIANCE WITH EAAB AND FICA

ATTENTION: TO ALL EASTATE AGENTS WHO HAVE NOT AS YET COMPLETED AND SUBMITTED THE SELF ASSESSMENT

REMINDER AND EXTENSION OF DEADLINE: SELF-ASSESSMENT OF COMPLIANCE WITH EAAB AND FICA

Further to the email send to you on 18 January 2018 on the above subject, as the principal of the selected estate agency firm, you are reminded that you should login on the MyEAAB Agents Portal, click on the “Self-assessment” link on the Portal and complete the questionnaire.  

Read moreREMINDER AND EXTENSION OF DEADLINE: SELF-ASSESSMENT OF COMPLIANCE WITH EAAB AND FICA

IT’S TIME TO CLEAN UP THE INDUSTRY!

Rebosa has launched a whistle-blower initiative on their website and are inviting all agents to report illegal operators.

There are a multitude of agents practicing illegally and the general perception is that no action is being taken in this regard. Rebosa has been interacting with the EAAB on an ongoing basis but has experienced difficulty in measuring the success of this. As a result, Rebosa has  launched a whistle-blower initiative on their website and are inviting all agents to report illegal operators in this manner. Anonymity is guarenteed.

This does not mean that the whistle-blower opportunity on eaab.org.za must not be used – the more, the better.

Says Rebosa chief executive, Jan le Roux: “Our register will give us the opportunity to actually follow up going forward as to the net results achieved.
As indicated on our website, agents must please provide as much information as possible. We must all work together to clean up our industry.”

Find out more here: rebosa.co.za/report-illegal-agents/

 

FACING UP TO CHANGE

Courtesy Property Professional Jan 31, 2018

Pending legislation and a new property sector rulebook mean agencies cannot ignore empowerment requirements.

Estate agents who complain that the new Property Sector Code amounts to an onerous burden have only themselves to blame for the 60-page empowerment rulebook that they can no longer ignore. That is according to Mashilo Pitjeng, who has been closely involved with the amended code.

He told the annual general meeting of the Real Estate Business Owners of South Africa (Rebosa) in October that the residential property sector’s failure to voluntarily grasp the transformation nettle has forced the hand of lawmakers. And in an interview with Property Professional, Pitjeng was adamant that residential sector agencies had paid little heed to transformation imperatives.

“Where industry fails, where the market fails, government will legislate,” says Pitjeng, who chairs the research committee of the Property Sector Charter Council and is the facilitator of its technical committee. “The residential sector is not married to the philosophy of transformation. They ignored it (the old code), making zero submission,” he says. The new code was gazetted in June 2017, amending the 2012 version, with a number of new provisions and tweaks to weightings and targets.

The game-changer, though, is the Property Practitioners Bill, also gazetted in 2017. Once passed into law, the bill will put the code front and centre for agencies because it prohibits the issuing of a fidelity fund certificate to anyone “not in possession of a BEE certificate”, details of which are in the code.

FIDELITY FUND CERTIFICATES

But Portia Tau-Sekati, the Property Sector Charter chief executive, says agencies need not panic. None will be denied a fidelity fund certificate, regardless of its broad-based black economic empowerment score, so long as they provide a BBBEE certificate. Tau-Sekati does not rule out future changes to the property code that might include minimum points requirements, but says for now the compliance bar has been set low for small agencies. She explains that those with a turnover below R2.5m a year are classified as exempted micro enterprises and need only submit an affidavit in lieu of a certificate, stating turnover and ownership.

“Every year the Department of Trade and Industry asks, ‘How is residential doing?’ and I tell them I have no clue. So we are saying let them [the residential sector] provide. Whatever your level, just provide it so we can understand the issues and see if we can sort out where there are challenges,” says Tau-Sekati. The Department of Trade and Industry drafted the generic codes of good practice upon which all industry codes are based, including property.

SMALL ENTERPRISE CONCERNS

But Jan le Roux, chief executive of Rebosa, is concerned about how qualifying small enterprises with limited resources will cope. “It’s very tough for a small company to comply,” he says, and questions some of the thinking behind the R2.5m threshold. While Le Roux emphasises Rebosa’s unequivocal support for transformation, he says this threshold makes little sense as it still excludes 85% of the industry. “Bryan Chaplog, previous chief executive of the Estate Agency Aff airs Board, indicated that 85% of the industry falls below the R2.5m threshold. This is indicative of the lack of research on which the charter is based. This information is available at the EAAB.

“A big percentage of agencies are managed by one or two owner principals, rendering much of the charter an almost impossible target. The EAAB can confirm the number of principals and agents in each agency but I believe this was never made available to the charter, and if so it was not considered.”

Tau-Sekati acknowledges that real estate business owners had objected to the R2.5m threshold, but says they had failed to put a viable alternative on the table during consultations. “We used the estate agency board’s information and found out if we increased this to R10m, 80%-90% of agencies
would be exempted … and to us that was not enough to transform the estate agents.”

Read moreFACING UP TO CHANGE

GUIDANCE ON THE IMPLENTATION OF THE FINANCIAL INTELLIGENCE CENTRE AMENDMENT ACT BY ESTATE AGENTS

The President assented to the Financial Intelligence Centre Amendment Act, 2017 (“the Act”), on 26 April 2017. Certain sections of the Act came into operation on 13 June and also on 2 October 2017 while other sections of the Act will come into operation on a date still to be announced.

It is suggested that estate agency firms, as accountable institutions, carefully consider the changes introduced by the Act at the highest level of authority such as, for instance, by the board of directors, senior management or any other high level of authority within the enterprise.  

Read moreGUIDANCE ON THE IMPLENTATION OF THE FINANCIAL INTELLIGENCE CENTRE AMENDMENT ACT BY ESTATE AGENTS

EAAB WAIVES FINES FOR CPD TRAINING UNTIL 31 MARCH 2018

Dear Colleagues

It gives me great pleasure to announce that we have been given a grace period for the CPD deadline until 31 March 2018 and no penalties will apply.

We have interacted with the EAAB extensively over the past weeks and believe it made a difference.

Together we can achieve what individually we cannot.

Please read the notice below from the EAAB carefully.

EAAB WAIVES FINES FOR CPD TRAINING UNTIL 31 MARCH 2018

We thank you for all the emails we’ve received, your screenshots and proof of payments.  We are still working closely with EAAB personnel to get these resolved in good time whilst taking into account the severe backlogs that exist.

This being said, we urge you to comply well before the new deadline i.e. at least by 15 February as leaving it to the last minute will leave you compromised, should the system not be able to cope with increased traffic.  No further deadline will be given and Rebosa will not be in a position to assist after this date.

Kind regards
Jan