Real estate news

Real estate board amalgamation

Proposal to amalgamate 11 B.C. real estate boards had majority support but failed to reach the required vote approval threshold.

It has majority support but isn’t going to happen.

That is the end result of a proposal to amalgamate 11 different real estate boards across the province under one association, which failed to reach the required vote approval threshold.

The various boards would have joined administrative forces with the B.C. Real Estate Association to form a new professional association for provincial real estate agents called Realtors of B.C.

The South Okanagan Real Estate Board voted 79 per cent in favour of the merger, passing its bylaw stipulated 75 per cent mark.

The Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board voted 56 per cent in favour, falling short of the 67 per cent approval requirement.

Votes for the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board and Kamloops and District Real Estate Association also failed to reach the approval threshold, despite each receiving more than 50 per cent support.

The vote outcome came as a disappointment for OMREB president Anthony Bastiaanssen, who said his board has worked the past two years on the proposal.

“Our board specifically believed it was a good step for us and for our industry in general,” Bastiaanssen said.

“We invested a substantial amount of time and resources to get to this point, so it’s disappointing we are not moving forward.”

He said the merger would have created administrative efficiency and cost effectiveness results, created a single unified voice to speak for B.C. realtors regarding client relationships and the ability to create provincewide professional standards, education and members client service enhancements.

“It would have allowed realtors in B.C. to provide better services to consumers,” Bastiaanssen said.

“The days of localized realtors focused on local customers with local market professional rules and regulations are gone in our industry. The concept of localization has been made redundant by advanced technology.”

For the consumer, Bastiaansen said the changes would most noticeably have offered more access to information for clients looking to buy a property in a different market area from where they live.

Deanne Horn, a Langley realtor and president of the B.C. Real Estate Association which represents more than 20,000 realtors across the province, said one outcome would have been to create a single MLS system to service the entire province.

“Right now someone in Vancouver can access realtor.ca to look for properties in Kelowna, but the information available is not as detailed as what you find on the MLS system for that market,” Horn said.

Horn said pooling resources and acting more collectively as an industry felt some pushback from those real estate board members not wanting change, preferring to keep the sense of professional independence in a given region, and to some extent discouraging realtors, although licensed to work anywhere in B.C., from working in their markets by adopting region specific rules and regulations

“Different boards have different views on how it all should work, and maybe we need to get more information out there to our members to allow them to think it through, but this initiative would have been away to improve services we can provide to our clients,” Horn said.

Garry Gratton, president of the South Okanagan Real Estate Board, said realtors recognize there are many new opportunities to improve professional services for clients.

“The reorganization proposal was intended to improve the support structure known as Organized Real Estate, which is the governing and administrative body responsible for the daily operation and function of the real estate industry across the province,” Gratton said.

“As it is, we are constantly striving and planning for the future and how we can best work together to serve the public, our clients, to the best of our professional abilities.”

Bastiaanssen said what happens next within his industry will likely be the main topic of discussion at the next joint real estate board and association meeting in January.

“It’s a bit of an unknown where we go next but I’m sure it will be a topic of discussion,” he said.

 

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Van, tools stolen from Penticton company facing third theft in one month

An Eckert Electric Ltd. van was stolen this morning at gas station with employees close by

Sewer service planned for South Okanagan community of Kaleden

Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen plans to extend Okanagan Falls system into Kaleden

Massoudi’s memoir on the table at Brown Bag Lecture Series

Mehrnaz Massoudi will be the presenter at the Feb. 25 Penticton Museum Brown Bag Lecture Series

Winterfest Dart tourney begins tonight at the Elks Lodge

The 21st annual Winterfest Dart Tournament this year is offering plenty of prize money

VIDEO: B.C. senior recalls ‘crazy’ wartime decision to grab bear cub from den

Henry Martens – now 96 – says he was lucky to be alive after youthful decision to enter a bear’s den

Pawsative Pups: You have a new puppy, now what?

Lisa Davies is a new columnist for Black Press who writes about dog training

Loans or gifts? Judge rules woman must pay B.C. man back $7K

B.C. judge rules that woman must pay back more than $7,000 in advanced funds to man

VIDEO: Outpouring of worldwide support for bullied Australian boy

Australian actor Hugh Jackman said ‘you are stronger than you know, mate’

‘A horror show:’ Ex-employee shares experience at problematic Chilliwack seniors’ home

Workers are paid below industry standard at all Retirement Concepts facilities

Forest industry protests northern B.C. caribou protection deal

B.C. Mining Association supports federal-Indigenous plan

Youth-led report calls on B.C. government to create plan to end youth homelessness

There are no dedicated programs for youth homelessness at federal, provincial level, report says

Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen adopts 2020 budget

$57.9 million budget is 11.2 per cent higher than last year’s amount

Regional district gives approval for farm worker housing near Summerland

Application is for 41-bedroom facility to be constructed in Meadow Valley area

Most Read