Ontario Legislature Passes Trust in Real Estate Services Act, 2020
Bill 145 Will Update the Law For Real Estate Professionals In Today’s Market
TORONTO — Yesterday, the Trust in Real Estate Services Act, 2020 passed Third Reading in the Ontario legislature with unanimous support. Once in force, it will modernize the rules for registered real estate brokerages, brokers and salespersons. Ontario will continue consulting with consumers and the real estate industry over the coming months to develop the regulations that must be put in place before the act is brought into force.
"During consultations and throughout debate, we heard from a wide range of people who reinforced how important it is for people to have trust and confidence in the people they work with in a real estate transaction," said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Government and Consumer Services. "Whether it's your home, business or the family farm, we want to make sure that consumers and real estate professionals alike benefit from strong rules and an honest and competitive business environment."
Once proclaimed into force, the proposed changes to the act will:
- Enable regulatory changes to improve the information consumers receive about what a real estate professional and brokerage must do for them, and that would give consumers more choice in the real estate purchase and sale process.
- Improve professionalism among real estate professionals and brokerages by allowing for regulatory changes to enhance ethical requirements.
- Update the Real Estate Council of Ontario's (RECO) regulatory powers, including allowing it to levy financial penalties (also known as administrative penalties) to promote compliance with the act — and allowing RECO's registrar to take into account a broader range of factors when considering eligibility for registration.
- Create a stronger business environment by laying the foundation for allowing real estate professionals to incorporate and be paid through the corporation while maintaining measures that protect consumers, as well as by enabling the creation of a specialist certification program that may be developed by government or by RECO.
- Bring the legislation up to date and reduce regulatory burden.
"By strengthening consumer protection and fixing the broken real estate discipline system, the Government of Ontario is showing REALTORS® and home buyers and sellers that it is on their side. Ontarians deserve the best when it comes to making the biggest financial transaction of their lives and TRESA will make this province theNorth American leader once again when it comes to a well-regulated real estate market." - Tim Hudak, CEO, Ontario Real Estate Association
"We're pleased to have worked with the government on this important legislation that will better protect consumers when they are making the biggest financial transaction of their lives. We commend the government for keeping consumers at the forefront while enabling registrants to better operate in a rapidly changing marketplace. This new legislation reinforces RECO's commitment to raising the bar and strengthening trust in the real estate industry." - Michael Beard, CEO, Real Estate Council of Ontario
"The Toronto Regional Real Estate Board is applauding Minister Thompson and the provincial government for the successful passage of the Trust in Real Estate Services Act, 2020. This significant effort will help enhance professional standards, create a more fair and efficient business environment, and better protect consumers dealing with those who trade in real estate in Ontario." John DiMichele, CEO, Toronto Regional Real Estate Board.
- Bill 145 was introduced in the legislature on November 19, 2019.
- There are more than 90,000 registered real estate salespersons, brokers and brokerages in Ontario.
- The bill passed third reading by a vote of 91-0.
- The Real Estate Council of Ontario is the administrative authority that has been delegated responsibility to administer and enforce the act