The Height Of Summer Means A Busy Time For Ontario's Real Estate Market



    McGuinty Government Helps Consumers Stay Informed

    TORONTO, June 2 /CNW/ -

    NEWS

    The approaching height of summer brings a busy time for Ontario's real
estate market. Ontario is providing information and resources to help protect
all consumers when buying or selling a home.
    When buying or selling real estate property, being aware of all the 'do's
and don't's' can help make an increasingly complex transaction less
challenging. Amongst the several things Ontarians should be aware of when
buying or selling a property, include:

    
    -   Your deposit on a property is insured.
    -   Agent commissions are negotiable.
    -   Representation agreements are legally binding contracts.
    -   You can verify registration status and find related information
        online.
    

    To help stay informed of what to know before purchasing or selling
property, a good source of information is the Real Estate Council of Ontario
(RECO) (http://www.reco.on.ca/). RECO has a dedicated Consumer Information
section that provides helpful information about mortgage fraud, title fraud,
marijuana grow houses and much more.

    QUOTES

    "Buying or selling a home is an important, emotional milestone in our
lives. Real estate transactions have become increasingly complex, so we
encourage all Ontario consumers to get the facts and protect themselves in any
real estate transaction," said Ted McMeekin, Minister of Government and
Consumer Services.

    QUICK FACTS

    
    -   Before signing a representation agreement with your real estate
        broker or sales person, make sure you know how long the agreement
        will be in effect.
    -   RECO is responsible for regulating trade in real estate, in the
        public interest, on behalf of the Ministry of Government and Consumer
        Services.
    -   With general questions or concerns about a broker or salesperson,
        contact the Office of the Registrar at 416-207-4800 or
        1-800-245-6910.
    

    LEARN MORE

    Your consumer rights and responsibilities:
www.ontario.ca/consumerprotection
(http://www.gov.on.ca/mgs/en/ConsProt/ConsProt/STEL01_132036.html)

    
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    BACKGROUNDER
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                       THE 2008 SMART CONSUMER CALENDAR
    

    Protect Your Interests In A Real Estate Transaction (June 2008)

    Make sure your broker or salesperson is registered.

    Before you begin working with a real estate broker or salesperson, you
should use the Real Estate Council of Ontario's (RECO) online search feature
to confirm if he or she is registered.
    The information available includes the registration status, the current
expiry date of registration and regulatory activities related to the
brokerage, broker or salesperson.
    RECO's website, at www.reco.on.ca, includes a dedicated Consumer
Information section, which provides consumer-focused information about
mortgage fraud, title fraud, marijuana grow houses and much more.
    If you have a general question or concern about the conduct of a broker
or salesperson, you may contact the Office of the Registrar at 416-207-4800 or
1-800-245-6910.

    2008 Smart Consumer Calendar

    The 2008 Smart Consumer Calendar provides consumers with helpful tips and
resources, while educating them about frauds and scams in the marketplace.

    
    -   The ministry is distributing 275,000 English and 30,000 French copies
        of the calendar to individuals and organizations across Ontario.
    -   The calendar is available at all MPP constituency offices, and at all
        Service Ontario / government information centres.
    -   The calendar can be ordered by individuals and groups, free of
        charge, by calling 1-800-668-9938, or by ordering online at
        www.serviceontario.ca/publications.
    -   The calendar can also be downloaded from the ministry's website at
        www.ontario.ca/consumerprotection.
    -   The 2008 Smart Consumer calendar is proudly sponsored by a number of
        private and public sector organizations, who work to protect both
        consumers and businesses across Ontario from frauds and scams,
        including:
           -  Board of Funeral Services
           -  Financial Services Commission of Ontario
           -  Ministry of Health Promotion
           -  Ontario Energy Board
           -  Ontario Motor Vehicle Industry Council
           -  Real Estate Council of Ontario
           -  Bank of Canada
           -  Investor Education Fund
           -  Canadian Motor Vehicle Arbitration Plan
           -  Canadian Health Care Anti-Fraud Association
           -  Interac Association
           -  Canada Revenue Agency - Charities Directorate

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For further information:

For further information: Greg Dennis, Minister's Office, (416) 327-3072;
 Ciaran Ganley, Communications Branch, (416) 325-8659

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