Estate agents must maintain good order at sale sites and comply with guidelines issued by the Estate Agents Authority when participating in promotions of residential properties if they are to avoid disciplinary action.
During a patrol operation at the sales site of a new residential development, authority staff discovered a man standing on a carriageway soliciting business with promotional leaflets for the development.
When the staffers’ car neared, he rushed to the vehicle and asked one of the occupants whether he was interested in viewing a show flat.
The man was not wearing an estate agent or staff ID card at that time but was later found out to be a licensed salesman.
He only showed the staff an estate agent’s card after he was asked to do so.
The disciplinary committee found that the salesman failed to comply with the guidelines of an authority practice circular (No 16-02 [CR]) by standing on the carriageway and intercepting vehicles, which endangered the safety of drivers and other road users.
Additionally, as the circular details, staff of estate agencies deployed to first-sale sites must wear an agency and/or a staff card.
So the salesman was in breach of the ‘s code of ethics, which stipulate: “Estate agents and salespersons should be fully conversant with the Estate Agents Ordinance, its subsidiary legislation, this code of ethics, and other guidelines issued by the from time to time and shall observe and comply with them.”
The result was that the disciplinary committee admonished and reprimanded the salesman, fined him HK$2,000 and suspended his license for 14 days.
A condition was also attached to his license requiring him to obtain 12 points under the ‘s continuing professional development scheme.