This is just in: 36-year-old Raymond Chng (Chng Leimeng) has pleaded guilty to eight charges for posing as a property agent. Chng used to work as a registered property agent, but left his company in 2015. But this didn’t stop him from acting as an unregistered property agent.
As stated in the Estate Agents Act (EAA): to perform the work of a property agent in Singapore, the property agency must first be licensed and the property agent must be registered with the Council of Estate Agents (CEA) through his or her property agency. Unlicensed individuals may NOT act as property agents and be doing so is an offense.
The dangers of hiring an unregistered property agent
If you hire an unregistered estate agent, not only it means you are trusting someone who is posing as a property agent, it also means you have no protection from the law. If your “agent” doesn’t try to cheat you in any way, then there’s no harm done. You’ve dodged a bullet! But what if your agent sells you a misrepresented property, or he runs away with your cash deposit?
Under these circumstances, you’ll have no way of tracking them down and holding them responsible for their actions. Basically, you won’t have any way of getting your cash back. Assuming it’s a deposit that your agent ran away with, that’s a MINIMUM of $30,000 down the drain. That’s a lot of money to lose!
How to check if your property agent is registered
It’s important to be on the lookout for individuals posing as property agents. But how do you verify your property agent’s credentials? Simple:
– Option 1: use Propseller
to find your agent, as we’ve done the heavy work already and only recommend agents with up-to-date CEA credentials.
– Option 2: use the Public Register
available on the CEA website, and conduct a search.
Don’t think this is necessary? Remember: any person can be posing a property agent by passing you a randomly generated CEA registration number (or a registration number that has expired). Bearing this in mind, always refer to Propseller
or the Public Register of CEA to make sure everything’s in order. On top of that, ask to see your agent’s real estate agency card
(a PropNex example is available below), which contains a CEA-issued registration number and the real estate agency details.
One last tip in screening agents: making sure an agent is registered is one step in the right direction but it does not guarantee you are working with the best agents to achieve the best performance with your real estate. You must also compare them and use the experience of previous clients.
People are posting property agents reviews on Propseller
that are used to rank and recommend agents for each case (only registered and licensed ones!). You won’t run the risk of hiring a unregistered property agent and you’ll work with agents able to deliver good results!
How to report unlicensed agents
If you chance upon an unlicensed agent, report them to the CEA by calling 1800-6432555 or
to Propseller by calling +65 316 52 316 and we’ll take care of reporting the case for you.
Avoid unlicensed agents and work with the best ones
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