Updates to Legislation

REBBA Reform

The Real Estate and Business Brokers Act of Ontario, 2002 (REBBA) was a legislative act that governed the activities of registered companies and individual brokers engaged in the selling of real estate in Ontario, Canada, up until December 1, 2023, when the Trust in Real Estate Services Act (TRESA) officially replaced REBBA. The Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO) fully regulates TRESA on behalf of the Government of Ontario and Ministry of Public and Business Service Delivery.

Queens Park

The real estate industry has continued to evolve and grow since REBBA was implemented in 2002, and REALTORS® knew REBBA needed to keep the pace to ensure it was actually protecting the modern REALTOR®. We lobbied Queen’s Park on your behalf to make that happen, resulting in the new Trust in Real Estate Services Act (TRESA). The following information is retained for historical purposes, please visit orea.com/TRESA for the latest information on the new legislation governing Ontario REALTORS®.

What is REBBA?

young family with a dog viewing a potential new home

What is REBBA?

This legislation Act governs the activities of registered companies and individual brokers engaged in the selling of real estate in Ontario – a province of Canada. The provincial government passed the first Real Estate and Business Brokers Act in 1930. RECO fully regulates the REBBA on behalf of the Ontario Department of Consumer Services.

The 2002 edition of the REBBA is an updated version of the 1990 Act. The main changes made in the updated version of the regulation include:

  • an established and clear framework for the registration process, as well as the regulation of the activities of brokers and sellers and brokerage operations;
  • trading rules were moved to the Provisions section of the new edition from the previous version of the Law;
  • programs and procedures were supplemented that relate to insurance, the code of ethics, as well as the complaints process; 
  • the maximum size of fines for violating any paragraphs of the Law was also increased.

REBBA Application

REBBA woman looking at available real estate for sale at a brokerage

REBBA Application

Through a series of regulations, the Government of Ontario is successfully taking steps to strengthen legislation system and improve the quality of service to consumers, including homeowners, real estate professionals and tenants.

The REBBA applies to:

  • Brokerage Companies
  • Individual Brokers
  • Buyers
  • Private Sellers 

The Importance of the Act

the importance of REBBA on building stronger communities - row of townhouses in a neighborhood with a condo building in the background

The Importance of the Act

Given the changes in the real estate sector of Ontario, there is a need for tighter and thorough regulation of the market, as well as a revision of some points of the Act. Since 2002, the maximum penalty for violating REBBA clauses has not changed and currently stands at $25,000 (for individual sellers) and $50,000 (for brokerage companies). The fines were set back when the average price of a second home in the province was $211,000. Now, this figure has more than doubled.

Consequently, the effectiveness of fines as a way to eliminate or significantly reduce cases of unethical behaviour in accordance with all the principles of REBBA has decreased. Therefore, low fines are seen as an incentive for the wrong behaviour of real estate market participants. There are a number of other issues that consumers face today because of incomplete legislation, including RECO’s inability to revoke the license of unscrupulous brokers, the lack of transparency in RECO’s activities and failures in communication with consumers and resolution of all complaints. That is why the government of Ontario is working today to modernize the Act, making incremental changes and amendments to shape the updated Law, strengthening the industry and establishing high standards in the real estate industry for years to come.

Latest Amendments

REALTORS dressed in business suits discussing the lastest REBBA amendments

Latest Amendments

REBBA has been replaced by TRESA as of December 1, 2023. Please visit orea.com/TRESA for the latest information and updates on the new legislation governing Ontario REALTORS®.

The Government of Ontario continues to work for the benefit of the people by modernizing the legislation regulating real estate specialists’ activities. All additions and changes are designed to reflect today’s Ontario market better, reduce bureaucracy, increase transparency in the buying process, and protect consumer rights.

Prior to TRESA being passed, the last major update to the Law came into effect on March 31, 2006. In 2005, on November 7, additional and updated articles 50-53, which describe the process of creating regulations, came into force. In addition, section 8 on the certification of real estate market specialists were also updated.

Updates for the period from 2021 to 2022 include:

  • Document version dated December 8, 2020 – October 18, 2021
  • Document version dated October 19, 2021 – February 28, 2022
  • Document version dated March 1, 2022 – April 3, 2022
  • Document version dated April 4, 2022 – current

Full details of all changes and amendments can be found here

REBBA Reform

Scheduled Amendments

The following significant amendments to the Act, enacted by the government of Ontario, came into effect on December 1, 2023. Planned edits include the following issues:


First Amendment to the Act

Changing the REBBA name to the Trust in Real Estate Services Act (TRESA).


Second Amendment to the Act

Replacement of the current Code of Ethics, which governs the behaviour of registrants, with a new principle-based code.


Third Amendment to the Act

Greater clarity on the obligations of brokerages and sellers to disclose key information to buyers.


Fourth Amendment to the Act

Adding clearer information regarding options for buyers to interact with registered brokerages.


Fifth Amendment to the Act

Removing barriers to sharing the content of offers, opening up the possibility for a more transparent offer process while maintaining the privacy of the individuals making the offers.


The Real Estate and Business Brokers Act, also known as REBBA, is an act that regulates the relations of all participants and processes of the Ontario real estate market.

Learn more about REBBA

The Trust in Real Estate Services Act, 2020 received Royal Assent in March 2020, following years of lobbying to bring about changes to the Real Estate and Business Brokers Act (REBBA). TRESA is replacing REBBA and makes Ontario a North American leader in professional standards for real estate professionals.

Learn more about TRESA

TRESA is being implemented in three phases:

  • Phase One of TRESA, permitting Personal Real Estate Corporations (PRECs) and new advertising terms, is in effect as of October 2020.
  • Phase Two of TRESA makes big changes, including officially renaming REBBA the Trust in Real Estate Services Act (TRESA) and is in effect as of December 1, 2023.
  • Phase Three work is underway and will continue in 2024. For the latest updates, visit orea.com/TRESA.

The first edition of the Act regulating the real estate market was adopted by the relevant authorities and approved by the Government of Ontario as early as 1930.

The governing body that controls and enforces all points of the Act is the Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO).

Learn More About RECO

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