Association moves against quackery, fraud in estate agency

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Association moves against quackery, fraud in estate agency

The Association of Estate Agents of Nigeria (AEAN) has urged operators in estate agency to register with the association or Lagos State Government to eliminate quackery and its adverse effects.

The AEAN Chairman, Mr Adeolu Ogunbanjo, gave the advice on Monday while speaking with the Prime Post in Lagos.

Ogunbanjo said that activities of quacks had become worrisome and made members of the public to lose confidence in real estate agents when seeking accommodation.

He regretted that many prospective tenants had lost millions of naira to fake agents, saying that the situation tarnished the image of the profession.

According to him, the association has worked out modalities to checkmate fake estate agents.

“The public has poor perception of estate agents, and this is affecting estate surveying and valuation.

“To reverse this ugly trend, AEAN has designed ways to put the practice of real estate agency under control particularly in Lagos State,” he said.

Ogunbanjo said that the association had resolved to embark on a comprehensive awareness campaign in local government area in Lagos State to educate  operators in estate agency.

He said that the campaign, to start in September, would be a quarterly, adding that three local government areas would be covered in the first phase.

He added that in the course of the campaign, unregistered and roadside agents would be encouraged to identify with the association or Lagos State Real Estate Transaction.

“It is unfortunate that some agents are defrauding clients; that is why we are saying every practising agent should be registered.

“It will be difficult for a registered agent to dupe a client due to fear of sanctions or revocation of his/her certificate.

“During the sensitisation, roadside agents who cannot afford to register will be advised to affiliate with registered individuals.

“There is also a  plan to teach our members the best way to practise real estate agency through our monthly lectures, workshops, seminars and training.

“With this, a situation where an agent collects money from prospective tenants and runs away, will be a thing of the past,” Ogunbanjo said.

Ogunbanjo said that the association  had a disciplinary committee to punish members who worked contrary to its codes and ethical standards.

He advised members  of the public to engage the services of certified estate agents to avoid being  defrauded.