Come 2024, and Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA), has made it mandatory for all property agents to have a valid ‘Real Estate Agent Certificate of Competency’ after clearing the MahaRERA exam failing which they will not be eligible for fresh registration nor will they be able to renew their old one. This order comes into effect from January 1, 2024, a press note issued by MahaRERA, the state’s regulatory body said.
MahaRERA's Initiative in January 2023
It may be recalled that in January 2023, MahaRERA had introduced the exam and had made it compulsory for estate agents to get training and to appear and clear the exam. The idea was to equip them with all the laws, rules and regulations and procedures of property sales as they are the main mediators between the buyer and seller of property.
The new order also applies to developers and promoters of real estate projects, property firms who are hereby requested to only allow those agents to operate on their behalf who have a valid competency certificate. Failing which, the note says, suitable action will be initiated.
Positive Response from Estate Agents
Estate agent Pallavi Upadhaya who operates in South Mumbai and Pune recently cleared her exams. She says its a very good move on the part of MahaRERA as it will help screen out the riff raff from the system. “After all real estate forms the largest pool of investment across income strata. Hence its of utmost importance that the investors interests are protected. The training and exam help you to be equipped with knowledge and information about laws, rules and regulations which in turn enables you to cater to the needs of prospective buyers and sellers. At least then you are not misleading the buyer and there is accountability. Even the developers’ vision is better communicated to the buyer. So its a win-win situation for both” she says.
Amit Shah, another broker who from Mumbai’s Prabhadevi area says that the regulatory body should give more time for more agents to appear for the exam. “Instead of wielding a stick they should adopt an encouraging strategy. After all, only 44,000 estate agents are registered with MahaRERA which is not a big number. Many of these have not even appeared for the exam. They will have to be given time to do so. We need to open the space to rope in more brokers and the only way to do this is by giving them time to enrol and pass the exam”, he says.
Encouragement and Time Allocation for Compliance
He, however, adds that the new order is good to the extent that it equips the brokers with knowledge of rules, regulations and legalities involved in the property sale process. “This ensures transparency and accountability. But setting a deadline may not be a good thing. Give people time to do so,” he adds.