Realtor training, education, needs to be more robust, realtor says

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One Vancouver real estate agent says it should be tougher to be able to become a realtor.

New regulations designed to stop agents from engaging in shady practices around ‘shadow flipping’ took effect yesterday, but Keith Roy says there’s a better way.

Keith Roy is a 10-year member of the Professional Conduct Committee at the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. He says compared to other professions, there is very little formal training required for realtors.

“We need to change this from giving a test, to giving an education. Right now we’re testing and not educating our new agents,” Roy told On The Coast host Stephen Quinn. “I’m dealing with multi-million-dollar transactions every day … I have an online course that I took.”

“[The requirements] are not in line with the reality of what’s going on. The stakes are higher in British Columbia, and I think we need to raise the bar higher as well.”

Roy says beyond passing a test, there’s little else a prospective realtors need to do before they start looking for commissions.

Roy says he’s been calling for higher standards for the 10 years he’s been in business, and ultimately, it’s about consumer protection.

“The province is under enormous political pressure to at least let families and regular people feel like they’ve got a fair shot at the game. And people don’t feel that way,” he said.

But what will this do for the Lower Mainland’s skyrocketing real estate prices? Will this proposal help?

“Realtors don’t control the price: the market controls the price,” he said. “Consumers need to know that the rules are fair, and that multiple offers happen within a structure, and you don’t get beat out by someone who maybe paid less than you because that realtor cut back and kicked back commission here, there and everywhere.”

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