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December 5, 2011

Ontario’s homebuyers missing out on expert advice for life’s biggest investment

Ontario Real Estate Association survey shows lack of knowledge about Realtors’ expertise

TORONTO, December 5, 2011 — Of the more than 120,000 Ontarians who used a Realtor to buy or sell a home last year, many did so without fully understanding the expertise and skills Realtors provide, finds a new Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) survey. Conducted by Leger Marketing, the survey reveals that only 10 per cent of Ontarians who have used a Realtor know that Realtors are trained in environmental issues, and even fewer (six per cent) are aware that family law is part of a Realtor’s education. According to the Canadian Real Estate Association 195,591 homes were sold in Ontario in 2010.

“Realtors in Ontario must successfully complete a rigorous training process as well as continue our education after we start practising so we can be prepared to help our clients with all their needs,” says Barbara Sukkau, president of OREA. “Most clients do not realize that Realtors are aware of family law issues when selling a family home during a divorce, or that Realtors can advise about home inspections based on our knowledge of building construction in the province. There are many other issues that come to light during a real estate sale or purchase on which a Realtor can help a client make an informed decision.”

Even though people who have used a Realtor in the past were not aware of specific areas of a Realtor’s education, they do recognize the ethical integrity of the profession as 70 per cent of respondents knew that Realtors must abide by a code of ethics. Also, 50 per cent knew that Realtors must continue their education when they begin practicing to stay informed of changes in the industry.

“Buying or selling a home is the biggest financial decision a person or family can make, yet Ontarians in the real estate market have not taken advantage of all that a Realtor can offer,” says Sukkau. She suggests those who are looking to buy or sell a house or condo ask potential Realtors these 10 questions and also ones specific to their situation, like the ones below, to find someone who would be the best fit.

  • Do I need my spouse’s approval to sell my house if we’re separated and he/she no longer lives there?
  • When am I allowed to put a parent’s home on the market if they are in nursing care or have died?
  • Will I need a permit from the city if I want to cut down a tree so I can extend the house?

Potential homebuyers and sellers can also learn more about what a Realtor can do for them by watching this video at http://bit.ly/OREARealtor. To learn more about the benefits of working with a Realtor, visit howrealtorshelp.ca.


The survey was conducted online by Leger Marketing between Monday, November 7, 2011, and Wednesday, November 9, 2011, using Leger Marketing’s online panel, LegerWeb. A sample of 1000 Ontarians, 18 years of age or older were surveyed. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/-3.1%, 19 times out of 20.

About the Ontario Real Estate Association

The Ontario Real Estate Association represents 50,000 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 42 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its REALTOR® members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services. OREA.com



For more information contact:

Jennifer Fox

Thornley Fallis Communications

Mobile: 416-473-9565

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