Home  |  Our Missions  |  Leadership  |  Professional Development  |  Consumers 蝸居族  |  Practitioners  |  Events  |  FAQ  |  Login

Our Missions

In summary, we aim to:

  1. Promote fair estate agency practice for the benefit of the Hong Kong general public; more...
  1. Promote the status of the estate agency profession in Hong Kong through the setting of practice standards and communication with government authorities and consumer organizations or the like, whether local or overseas; more...
  1. Promote professionalism and specialization of members and associates through continuing professional development, honours and speciality designation and exchange with local and overseas professional, educational and related institutions; more...
  1. Promote the welfare of members and associates and enhance their esprit de corps by providing appropriate platforms for experience sharing and mentorship. more...

1. To promote fair estate agency practice#

An estate agency relationship entails the duty to act in the best interests of the client; fiduciary duties are the cornerstone of this relationship.

We believe that it is difficult for an estate agent to simultaneously – and loyally – serve two principals, for example, a buyer and a seller. This situation would place the agent in a situation where a ‘conflict of interest’ may arise as each principal’s interests are tested by the agent’s ability to remain impartial and equally dedicated.

In Hong Kong, while it is the norm to use the services of a dual agency (i.e. an estate agent acting for both the vendor and purchaser, or landlord and tenant), we recognize that this it is not the common practice in other common law jurisdictions. For example, dual agency is no longer allowed in New Zealand.

We, therefore, encourage our members (where practicable) to:

(i) Serve only one side in a property transaction.

(ii) Adopt a Sale and Purchase Agreement that is unbiased.


2. To promote the status of the estate agency profession#

We embrace the Code of Ethics and other rules and directives of the EAA, and we consider these the essential foundation of estate agency practice. Further to this, we encourage our members to strive for a level of professionalism that clearly shows the public that our estate agent members can be trusted to look after their best interests.

For example, someone unfamiliar with Hong Kong estate agency practices may be surprised to find that: a vendor is not obliged to provide property information, because the appointment of estate agents (who bear the information burden) is not mandatory; there is no standard tenancy agreement to balance the interests of the landlord and the tenant; and the return of their rental deposit, invariably kept by the landlord instead of an independent rental bond stakeholder, is fraught with difficulties – in particular for tenants departing Hong Kong.

To this end, we seek to:

(i) Secure practical guidelines, whether from the EAA or otherwise, on the handling of difficult situations such as unauthorized building works, stigmatized properties, and so on;

(ii) Promote ‘best practice’ to guide members’ in handling situations that require special attention;

(iii) Procure, from relevant authorities, standardized and unbiased agreements for tenancy and sale and purchase, initially for residential properties;

(iv) Lobby the legislature to mandate vendors to provide material property information to potential purchasers, whether personally or through professionals such as estate agents, surveyors or solicitors to redress the present imbalance in access to property information. Alternatively, sale of properties must be handled by estate agents who are obliged to provide such information;

(v) Lobby the Consumer Council and government authorities to establish a rental deposit authority to safe-keep rental deposits and apply interest generated in a fair manner;

(vi) Provide appropriate resources for the public to gain a better understanding of estate agency practice and, where our standards are breached by members, to help to redress grievances through our disciplinary code;


3. To promote professionalism and specialization#

For most people their home is their most valuable asset, often representing their life’s savings.

When making a decision to sell or purchase, the client has a right to be served by a professional estate agents who not only possess the mandatory licence, but are also committed to maintaining and updating their knowledge and skills.

For this reason, we consider Continuing Professional Development (CPD) a requirement rather than an option for our members.

We expect our members to be proactive in their learning. This may include, but is not limited to, maintaining their local knowledge, and improving their general knowledge of other industries related to property transactions.

As practitioners gain experience in specific areas, such as sales, leasing, commercial property, property management, property development and so on, specialization may emerge. In some countries, estate agents can train and qualify in ‘specialized’ areas of estate agency work. We believe the Hong Kong public will equally benefit from such specialization.

To achieve this, we will endeavour to:

(i) Organize training seminars and issue regular updates on practice matters;

(ii) Require members to meet Continuing Professional Development (CPD) standards as a condition for renewing their membership. The initial requirement will be modest as current CPD activities are mainly conducted in Chinese. Therefore, this may not be affective before the end of 2011.

(iii) Liaise with local and overseas professional and educational institutions to identify and arrange specialist training that is relevant and economically-viable for our members;


4. To promote welfare and collegiality#

Non-Chinese speaking estate agents have not received much attention, partly because of their small representative numbers, and partly because no forum exists for their benefit. Their aspirations, as well as the needs of foreign clients, may be as diverse as their cultural backgrounds. For this reason, we shall act as a conduit to channel members’ views to the EAA and appropriate governmental authorities with a view to improving their welfare and the general good of the profession.

To this end we plan to:

(i) Provide opportunities for members to exchange views, seek advice, foster mentorship and so on, through the website, training seminars, and other appropriate forums;

(ii) Promote networking to enhance collegiality;

(iii) Publish a members' roll on our webpage listing their specialization, languages spoken, and other relevant information to assist consumers and people newly taking up residence here in their search for services and to assist members to connect;

(iv) Lobby the legislature or government authorities to improve the legal and economical environment for, not just our members, but the estate agency profession as a whole. A case in point may be to protect practitioners' right to sue for agency commission