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Code of Ethics

Preamble

1. The following is the Code of Ethics promulgated by the Estate Agents Authority (EAA) for the purpose of providing guidance and directions in the conduct of estate agency work. It is the same version as the one issued on 1 January 2002.

2. Failure by licensees to observe and comply with the Code of Ethics may render them not being fit and proper persons under the Estate Agents Ordinance (EAO) to hold licences which in turn may affect their eligibility to be granted or to hold or continue to hold their licences. Disciplinary action may be taken against them.

Code of Ethics

3.1    Compliance with the law

3.1.1 Estate agents and salespersons shall refrain from activities during their practice which may infringe the law.

3.2    Good understanding of related legislation and requirements

3.2.1 Estate agents and salespersons should be fully conversant with the EAO, its subsidiary legislation, this Code of Ethics, and other guidelines issued by the EAA from time to time and shall observe and comply with them in the course of their practice.

3.2.2 Estate agents and salespersons should keep themselves informed of any laws, government regulations, essential facts and developments in the real estate market in order to be in a position to advise their clients in a responsible manner. They should strive to provide services and opinions based on knowledge, training, qualifications and experience in the real estate business.

3.3    Professional knowledge and competence required

3.3.1 Estate agents and salespersons shall, in the course of business, provide services to clients with honesty, fidelity and integrity. They should protect their clients against fraud, misrepresentation or any unethical practices in connection with real estate transactions.

3.4    Ethical and moral standard during practice and responsibilities

3.4.1 Estate agents and salespersons, in engaging and accepting an appointment as an agent, should protect and promote the interests of their clients, carry out the instructions of their clients in accordance with the estate agency agreement and act in an impartial and just manner to all parties involved in the transaction.

3.5    Exercising due diligence

3.5.1 Estate agents and salespersons shall, in fulfilling their duties, exercise due care and due diligence.

3.6    Minimizing any conflict of interest situations

3.6.1 Estate agents and salespersons should avoid accepting an appointment involving a property in which they have a beneficial interest.

3.6.2 Estate agents and salespersons shall, in the event of possible or potential conflict of interest (such as representing both the vendor and the purchaser), disclose to their clients that they are so acting. Any pecuniary or other beneficial interests in relation to the property shall be disclosed fully to all parties concerned.

3.7   Relationship between agents and ethical standards to be observed in conducting the estate agency business

3.7.1 Estate agents and salespersons shall not seek unfair advantage over, nor injure directly or indirectly the reputation of, nor publicly disparage the business practice of other agencies.

3.7.2 Estate agents and salespersons should avoid any practice which may bring discredit and/or disrepute to the estate agency trade.

3.7.3 Estate agents and salespersons should adhere to the principles of fair competition and refrain from restrictive business practices.

 
Estate Agents Authority
1 February 2007
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