Six month ban and $3,000 fine for property manager (Samantha Peploe)
A Victoria Park property manager who misled her client regarding a licensing arrangement has been reprimanded and fined $3,000 by the State Administrative Tribunal and had her registration as a real estate sales representative suspended for six months.
Samantha Peploe was working for a licensed real estate agency as a property manager and was responsible for managing two properties in Teddington Road, Burswood. In July 2014, she informed the owner of the properties that she was leaving the agency and pursuing her own business Freedom Occupancy.
Ms Peploe told her client that she was in the process of applying for a licence for her business and, in the meantime, she would be operating under the licence of another real estate agent, but she did not have authorisation to do so.
Ms Peploe organised for the property owner to sign an amended management authority under the name of her unlicensed business Freedom Occupancy. She also issued numerous statements to lessors under the licensed agent’s name.
Her application for a real estate agent’s licence was rejected by Consumer Protection in September 2014 due to insufficient experience.
Consumer Protection took disciplinary action against Ms Peploe who agreed that she failed to act fairly and honestly and was guilty of making false and misleading statements in breach of the industry Codes of Conduct, the Real Estate and Business Agents Act and the Australian Consumer Law.
Acting Commissioner for Consumer Protection David Hillyard said deceptive conduct by those working in the property industry in WA won’t be tolerated.
“Licensing laws and the industry codes of conduct are quite clear in setting out the obligations of agents, sales reps and property managers to ensure that their dealings with clients are totally honest and fair,” Mr Hillyard.
“Misleading clients, either by making false statements or withholding important information, is a serious violation of these obligations which may result in serious consequences for offenders.”
More information on the obligations of real estate agents and sales representatives is available on the Consumer Protection website: www.commerce.wa.gov.au/cp/realestate or enquiries can be made by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 1300 30 40 54.
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