The story appears on

Page A4

February 22, 2010

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro

Crackdown on illegal property agencies will start next month

SHANGHAI industrial and commercial authorities will crack down on black real estate agencies in March. Seized agencies will be urged to apply for a license or shut down. Owners of seized agencies will be fined.

Shanghai Industrial and Commercial Administrative Bureau officials said many agencies lend or sell business licenses to others, causing market disorder. Some real estate agents even rent their realtor certificate to others through the Internet.

Shanghai Daily found yesterday that on some big online forums, such as, people asked to rent certificates. They usually leave a cell phone number and a surname in a post, saying that the fee can be discussed in person.

Officials said that the rental of such certificates could fetch more than 2,000 yuan (US$293) a year.

"These illegal transactions are also a big target of our crackdown," said bureau official Sui Bo.

Illegal agents will be fined 500 yuan to 30,000 yuan, the bureau said.

The bureau encouraged people to report black agencies and illegal agents through its hotline 12315.

Some house renters have complained that they had to spend lots of time and energy looking for an apartment because they didn't know which agencies were credible.

"Usually the real apartment is different from what an agency describes," said Li Xueqing, a Nanjing native now working in Shanghai. "I get exhausted when I look for a new room."

Ma Ji, a research manager at Shanghai Centaline Property Consultants Ltd, operator of the city's largest brokerage chain, said that the crackdown reflects the city's commitment to a regulated realtor market. "However, it still remains unknown whether the problem can be solved thoroughly," he added.

Unlike many industries in which a college degree is usually a prerequisite for decent jobs and salaries, the real estate industry has comparatively lower thresholds, making it a magnet for less educated people.

Among the city's realtors, who fluctuate in number between an estimated 70,000 and 100,000, the majority are non-Shanghai natives with high-school degrees or equivalent or even lower educational backgrounds, industry people said.

But the official test for realtor qualifications has always been difficult for less educated agents to pass.

Real estate agents are a relatively new industry in Shanghai. They began popping up in the 1990s, when policy started to shift from company or government-provided housing to a market where people were encouraged to buy their own homes.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend