A month ago we ran a quiz compiled by compliance training expert David Beaumont - and the results do not make pretty reading for the industry as a whole.
Beaumont’s quiz in June followed a Euro 2016 theme. So far, so fun. But just like the England team, estate agents performed very poorly.
The average mark of those who completed the quiz was only 54 per cent with only 15 per cent of the entrants obtaining full marks - and only one of those did so at the first attempt.
Beaumont writes: “From the results there wasn’t any clear indication that knowledge of a particular obligation was a problem, but the question relating to clients’ cancellation rights generated the most wrong answers.
“That ties in with what we find in our compliance work, as it is the area that agents get wrong regularly. Agents quite often do not have the correct statutory wording on terms of business. The consequences of that can mean clients do not have to pay any fees!
“The second and third most difficult questions for those who took part concerned obligations under the Estate Agents Act, which is interesting as these obligations have applied to agents for over 30 years.”
Over half of the entrants did not know who a connected person was, which is a little worrying when there is a statutory obligation to disclose in writing that a seller is a connected person to buyers when agents are acting for such a person.
Almost 50 per cent did not know which party they had to inform in writing when an offer was made to purchase a property - despite the rules being in force for many years.
“The very knowledgeable and lucky winner of the competition is Nicolas Wilkinson of Gibbins Richards in Somerset, who answered all questions correctly and was drawn out of the hat. He will celebrating his compliance knowledge very soon with the bottle of champagne we are sending him” explains Beaumont.