Unlicensed real estate agent agrees to additional training – assurance

A real estate agent who allegedly acted as a sales representative for a land agent while unlicensed has agreed to commence further training as part of an enforceable undertaking he has entered into with South Australia’s consumer watchdog.

Marc Olsen’s sales representative licence was cancelled in February 2017, after he failed to renew it.

An investigation by Consumer and Business Services revealed he was allegedly still entering into sales agency agreements with vendors on behalf of another land agent.

Following that investigation, Mr Olsen entered into an enforceable undertaking with the Commissioner for Consumer Affairs, agreeing to cease acting as a sales representative without a current licence and undertake three units that form part of the Certificate IV in Property Services within 12 months of entering into the undertaking.

Consumer and Business Services may use written undertakings in place of court-based enforcement action.

This does not rule out further action, such as prosecution, if the terms of the agreement are not met.

Signed assurance (PDF 109KB)

Bramalco to review consumer law practices – statement

Bramalco Pty Ltd, trading as Modern, has given a formal undertaking to the state’s consumer watchdog, after allegedly breaching customers’ cooling off rights and engaging in false, misleading or deceptive conduct on several occasions.

Under the arrangement, Bramalco is required to engage an independent professional to review its consumer law compliance program, including the effectiveness of its complaint handling system and compliance training program.

The report will be provided to the Commissioner for Consumer Affairs. Bramalco has undertaken to upgrade its compliance program and training in accordance with the report’s recommendations, within 3 months of receiving it.

It follows complaints about Bramalco’s door-to-door sales of home improvement products, such as shutters and roofing, between January 2015 and July 2016.
Complainants included residents in West Croydon, Warradale, Brahma Lodge, Andrews Farm, Melrose Park, Renmark and Berri.

An investigation by Consumer and Business Services found evidence that contracts issued by Bramalco attempted to deprive consumers of their termination rights by incorrectly stating that the customer had proactively invited the retailer to their address.

It is further alleged that Bramalco took deposits and installed products within the 10 day cooling off period, breaching their responsibilities under the unsolicited sales provisions of Australian Consumer Law (SA).

Consumer and Business Services also believes Bramalco misinformed consumers about their cooling off rights and refused to provide refunds within the prescribed cooling off period.

“Consumers who are approached by a dealer at their home without inviting them are entitled to an extended 10 day cooling off period.” Commissioner for Consumer Affairs Dini Soulio said.

“Arrangements and sales can be cancelled by the consumer at any point within that time without further obligation.”

In accepting the undertaking, the Commissioner for Consumer Affairs notes that Bramalco acknowledged its conduct was likely to have contravened the Australian Consumer Law, and that it will takes steps to ensure future compliance with the Law.

Consumer and Business Services may use written undertakings in place of court-based enforcement action. This does not rule out further action, such as prosecution, if Bramalco fails to abide by the agreement.

If you want to know more about cooling off periods, or report a concern about a door to door salesperson, contact Consumer and Business Services on 131 882.

Signed assurance

Do the ‘heavy lifting’ before you sign – media release

South Australians who have made a New Year’s resolution to join a gym are being urged to shop around and check out the membership agreement before signing a contract.

Commissioner for Consumer Affairs, Dini Soulio said gym memberships are one of the common purchases that consumers seek advice about during the summer months.

Media release – do the ‘heavy lifting’ before you sign (PDF 172KB)

New liquor licensing laws pass Parliament

Following community and industry consultation, new liquor licensing laws were passed by Parliament yesterday.

The changes will be implemented in different stages, with further consultation in 2018 on the new fee structure and aspects of the new licensing regime.

Consumer and Business Services will work closely with industry bodies and liquor licence holders to ensure a smooth transition.

More details can be found on the Attorney-General’s Department website.

You are encouraged to sign-up for liquor licensing reform announcements and consultation opportunities.

Subscribe to the liquor licensing reform mailing list.

Unlicensed tradie fined $15,000 for breaches – media release

An unlicensed contractor who stole from one client and whose work was of such a poor standard his clients had to spend tens of thousands of dollars fixing it has been fined $15,000 and ordered to repay one of his victims $20,000 in the Adelaide Magistrates Court for breaches of the state’s Building Work Contractor’s Act.

Read the full media release – unlicensed tradie fined $15,000 for breaches (PDF 129KB)

Court assessor nominations

The occupational licensing Acts require the Minister of Consumer and Business Services to establish panels of court assessors to sit with the Magistrates Court or District Court in certain civil and disciplinary proceedings.

Court assessors will be appointed under the following legislative streams:

  • Building Work Contractors Act 1995
  • Second-hand Vehicle Dealers Act 1995
  • Plumbers, Gas Fitters and Electricians Act 1995
  • Land Agents Act 1994
  • Land Valuers Act 1994
  • Conveyancers Act 1994
  • Security and Investigation Industry Act 1995

There are two types of court assessors:

• Industry court assessors – are qualified and experienced in their nominated occupation and trade. They must be registered as a licence holder under a particular occupation. They provide to the court their expertise, knowledge of industry jargons and best practices.

• Consumer court assessors – represent people who are likely to deal with occupational tradespeople. They provide to the Court a consumer’s point of view about a particular trade.

A court assessor must:

• be ethical
• be able to clearly express themselves
• be able to conduct themselves with decorum in a court environment
• declare if there are any conflicts of interest before assisting a judge in a matter.

The court assessor’s role

Court assessors sit with the Court and provide relevant and impartial evidence about their trade expertise – building, conveyancing, real estate, land valuing, electrical, plumbing, gas fitter and security and investigation.

Assessors can help a judge in court proceedings by providing knowledge and technical evidence about the workings and practices of a particular trade.

Court assessors should never mislead the Court or become an advocate for their particular trade.

Court assessors may disagree with or fail to reach the same conclusion as the judge. The Court will reach its own conclusion, after considering the opinions and evidence of the court assessor.

Expression of interest

Interested individuals who wish to be nominated and considered for either the role of an industry or a consumer Court Assessor in the future can submit their expression of interest to Mr Paul Liew on CBS Regulatory Services at paul.liew@sa.gov.au or at 08 8226 8593.

Interested applicants for court assessors are also required to submit to CBS Regulatory Services the following additional documents when requested:

  • up-to-date curriculum vitae/resume
  • Submit a recent National Police Check.

Written evidence from nominee to nominated occupational/ trade association regarding their intention to apply to be a South Australian court assessor (industry court assessor applicants only)

Submit your expression of interest to be a court assessor.

Police screening

You will need to provide a national police check or DCSI screening certificate as part of your application. If you have not completed this check in the last 12 months or do not have it available to upload, you must complete a national police check before starting your application.

Nominators and supporters

CBS may consult with the trade or occupational representative associations before appointing the successful nominee for the role as a court assessor

Consumer court assessors are not required to obtain any support for any organisation.

As industry court assessors seek to represent their various trades to the South Australia Judiciary, it is crucial that the applicant has the confidence of its trade or occupational representative body. As such it is strongly encouraged for industry court assessor applicants to inform their nominated occupation or trade representative organisations of their interest in writing.

The following representative bodies can be considered:


Occupation/ Trade Organisation Contact number Email
Land agents,

Land valuers

Australian Property Institute (API) (08)
8132 0092


Land valuers Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) (02)
9216 2333


Land agents Real Estate Institute of South Australia (REISA) (08)
8366 4300


Electricians National Electrical and Communications Association (NECA) (08)
8272 2966


Plumbers Master Plumbers Association South Australia inc (MPASA) (08)
8292 4000


Electricians, plumbers Communications Electrical and Plumbing Union, SA


8234 2130


Gas fitters Australian Pipeline Gas Group (APA) (08)
8159 1661


Gas fitters Transport Workers Union (TWU) (08)
8340 5900
Building work contractors Housing Industry Association of SA (HIASA) (08)
8340 5900
Building work contractors Master Builders Association (MBA) (08)
8346 4177


Second-hand vehicle dealers Motor Trade Association of South Australia (MTA) (08)
8291 2000


Second-hand vehicle dealers Australian Automobile Dealers Association (AADA) (02)
9150 6991


Security staff Australian Security Industry Association (ASIAL) (02)
8425 4300


Security staff National Security Association of Australia (SA) Inc. (NSAASA) (07)
3852 1656


Conveyancers Australian Institute of Conveyancers South Australia Division (AICSA) (08)
8359 2090


Please kindly attention your letter to the Commissioner for Consumer and Business Services as follows:

Mr Dini Soulio

Commissioner for Consumer and Business Services

c/o Regulatory Services

Consumer and Business Services

GPO Box 1719

Adelaide SA 5001

Further enquiries

Contact Paul Liew of CBS Regulatory Services at paul.liew@sa.gov.au or at 08 8226 8593.


Changes to residential tenancies legislation – CBS News

Commencing 3 July 2017

The changes aim to clarify or provide solutions to several administrative issues that have been raised by industry.  It is important that all parties to a residential tenancy understand their rights and obligations.

Right to entry – section 72

In most cases, the landlord must provide a minimum period of notice to the tenant to attend the premises. However, there may be circumstances where the tenant would like the landlord to attend the premises more quickly to deal with certain matters.

The changes now allow the landlord to attend the premises at the tenant’s request to:

  • Carry out non-urgent repairs and maintenance (including garden maintenance) without the landlord needing to give the required notice.
  • Show the property to prospective tenants as soon as possible to minimise break lease fees, if the tenant wants to terminate the lease early (at least 28 days earlier).

Other than these circumstances, the existing notice periods and requirements for showing prospective tenants through the property still apply.

Landlords cannot initiate or entice any request. The request must be the tenant’s own choice.

Termination by tenant if residential premises for salesection 85A

If the landlord enters into a contract for sale of the property within two months after the tenancy commences and the landlord did not inform the tenant (before entering into the tenancy) of their intention to sell then the tenant has the right to terminate the lease.

If the landlord:

  • Gives the tenant written notice of the contract for sale of the property, then the tenant must exercise their right to terminate within two months of receiving this notice.
  • Does not give written notice to the tenant, then the tenant may terminate the lease at any time.

This amendment only applies to new tenancy agreements entered into on or after 3 July 2017.

Abandoned property – other than personal documents  – section 97B

Presently, once a landlord has taken possession of the premises, they must wait two business days before removing, destroying or disposing of abandoned property. The landlord must allow the tenant reasonable access to the property during this time to reclaim abandoned items.

New Form 2

The Form 2 ‘Notice by landlord to remedy breach of agreement – Notice of termination’ has been updated to reflect information about delivery by ordinary post and to clarify existing requirements to complete and serve the notice on the tenant.

The new Form 2 is available from the sa.gov website.

There will be a transition period for using the new Form 2. Old versions can still be used up until the end of September 2017. However, from 3 July 2017 landlords/agents are encouraged to complete the new Form 2.

For more information

Residential Tenancies (Miscellaneous) Amendment Act 2016