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Competition Bureau recommends:

Canada's self-regulated professions, which includes real estate brokerage, should re-examine their rules to ensure they serve a public good and do not go too far in restricting competition, a Competition Bureau study says. The Bureau's study, released today, found that rules that limit advertising, set prices for services and restrict who can offer services may go further than necessary to protect the public interest. Further, these rules can lead to higher prices, limit choice and restrict access to the type of information consumers need to make decisions.

"We understand that regulation plays a legitimate role in protecting consumers and meeting public policy goals," said Sheridan Scott, Commissioner of Competition. "However, not all the regulations we looked at appear necessary, and removing some of these restrictions could benefit consumers and the Canadian economy."

One of the findings: Consumers generally pay less for services when professionals compete on price. In real estate, Ontario legislation limits price competition. The Bureau recommends clients be able to choose the real estate services they want from a menu of offerings. Specifically, Ontario legislation dictates consumers pay either a flat fee or a percentage of the selling price. The Bureau recommends real estate regulators remove this restriction.

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December 11, 2007 in Real Estate Regulations | Permalink


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