Real estate sales rep fined for failing to disclose information

The State Administrative Tribunal WA.
The State Administrative Tribunal WA.

A MANDURAH real estate sales representative has been cautioned and fined $1000 by the State Administrative Tribunal for failing to disclose important information regarding the sewerage of a home he was selling.

Jonathan Kenny-Levick was the co-owner of his home in Dawesville that he put on the market in January, 2016 through his agency as the listing representative.

At the time, the property was still on septic tanks even though a scheme sewerage connection was available.

The home was sold in March 2016 but the new owners were never formally advised that the Water Corporation was requiring the property to be connected to the scheme sewerage system and that they would need to connect at their own cost.

In November, 2016 the Water Corporation advised the new owners that they had to arrange immediate connection, the cost being $3960.

Mr Kenny-Levick breached the Code of Conduct by not disclosing a material fact to potential buyers. He stated that the failure was unintentional and has since taken steps to ensure it won’t happen again.

Commissioner for Consumer Protection David Hillyard said it was essential for selling agents to find out all they can about a property and pass on any relevant information.

“Real estate agents are required to make all reasonable efforts to gather information about the properties they are selling and to disclose any important facts to the people who are considering whether to buy it,” he said.

“Withholding relevant information that may affect a potential buyer’s decision, even if it is unintentional, is a form of deception, so agents must be upfront with potential buyers.

“While it may not be possible to know everything about the property, especially if the owner doesn’t reveal it, all known facts that may influence a potential buyer’s decision must be disclosed.”

Mr Kenny-Levick declined to comment.