Consumers urged to avoid unlicensed estate agent - Media release

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Date
31 August 2017
Category
Media releases

Consumer Affairs Victoria is urging consumers to avoid engaging Craig Alan McIntosh for real estate services.

The Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria, Simon Cohen, issued the public warning notice under section 223 of the Australian Consumer Law (Victoria) (ACL (Vic)) and section 228 of the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 regarding the conduct of Mr McIntosh in the supply of real estate services.

Mr McIntosh is not and has never been a licensed estate agent in Victoria.

Consumer Affairs Victoria obtained injunctions against Mr McIntosh under the ACL (Vic) in March 2015, barring him from acting as an estate agent until he was licensed to do so.

Mr McIntosh worked as an agent’s representative with a licensed estate agent operating under various trading names, including McIntosh Lincoln, McIntosh Lincoln City Residential, and McIntosh Lincoln Property Concierge until 16 February this year.

Consumer Affairs Victoria has been informed that since this time, Mr McIntosh has held himself out to be able to engage in providing real estate services, and able to receive funds on behalf of people selling or purchasing real estate.

Mr Cohen is concerned that Mr McIntosh is continuing to act as an estate agent or agent’s representative despite Business Licencing Authority (BLA) records currently showing he is not employed by a real estate agency.

“The sale and purchase of a property has consumers putting large amounts of trust, and money, in estate agents and their representatives, making it vital that the agents they are dealing with are licensed and adhering to the law,” Mr Cohen said.

“This public warning notice sends a clear message to Victorians not to engage Mr McIntosh’s services or provide him with any funds for the purchase of real estate.”

There are further concerns that, from 16 February 2017 and until further notice, any money provided to Mr McIntosh may not be considered trust money under the Estate Agents Act 1980, and will therefore not be protected under the Victorian Property Fund.

Any consumer who has been approached by Mr McIntosh since 16 February 2017 in relation to the purchase or selling of real estate, or has provided or been asked to provide any form of payment to him in relation to any real estate transaction, can contact Consumer Affairs Victoria on 1300 55 81 81. 

Consumers are strongly encouraged to deal only with licensed estate agents when buying or selling property. To find a licensed estate agent, search the Estate agents public register.

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