Real Estate Board Clamping Down on Illegal Developers

The Real Estate Board (REB)/Commission of Strata Corporations (CSC) is clamping down on the number of unregistered real estate developers who are selling properties illegally. The Real Estate Board (REB)/Commission of Strata Corporations (CSC) is clamping down on the number of unregistered real estate developers who are selling properties illegally.“For the second time in 2019 we have had a conviction for an unregistered developer, and both cases are now at the sentencing process. We want to remind persons that the Real Estate Board/Commission of Strata Corporation is committed to ensuring that if developers fail to register they will answer to the law,” Chief Executive Officer of the Real Estate Board/Commission of Strata Corporations, Sandra Garrick, told JIS News.Mrs. Garrick said that in one of the cases the unregistered developer was marketing and selling units in an unregistered scheme for which the developer had not yet acquired land.“Part of the REB’s responsibility is to oversee that purchasers receive what they have contracted and that monies paid over to developers are used as the Real Estate Act prescribes, meaning the funds are put in a Trust account and not used as the developer’s personal money,” she emphasised.Mrs. Garrick is also encouraging  purchasers to do their due diligence when buying a property.“As a purchaser, the first thing you should do is ensure that the real estate developer is registered with the REB and is allowed to contract business, sell units and advertise. A list of registered developers can be found on the REB’s website and persons may call the Board to do checks,” she said.Mrs. Garrick pointed out that there are times when the REB may give a developer  tentative approval, but will not grant the developer approval to market the units.“If modification needs to be made to the covenant on a title we never allow units to be pre-marketed or pre-sold,” she said.She explained that a covenant is a contractual agreement enforceable by a court and the agreement can be phrased to prohibit certain actions on a property or safeguard the benefits derived from the leasing or sale of the property.Mrs. Garrick informed that purchasers may share copies of their contract with the REB along with a note stating the amount deposited for the purchasing of the property. This, she said,  will alert the Board that the developer is selling.“You run the risk of not being completely protected by the law when you do business with unregistered developers and losing your money. It is all well and good if everything goes okay, but if it doesn’t, it is the REB’s charge that protects you. The Board can position itself to sell the development and refund you your money or hold the developer to completing the unit, so that you can have it,” she told JIS News.Mrs. Garrick pointed out that it is in the developer’s best interest to register with the Board, as it provides credibility and allows the Board to act as a third party in staking claims on their behalf. Story Highlights Mrs. Garrick said that in one of the cases the unregistered developer was marketing and selling units in an unregistered scheme for which the developer had not yet acquired land. “For the second time in 2019 we have had a conviction for an unregistered developer, and both cases are now at the sentencing process. We want to remind persons that the Real Estate Board/Commission of Strata Corporation is committed to ensuring that if developers fail to register they will answer to the law,” Chief Executive Officer of the Real Estate Board/Commission of Strata Corporations, Sandra Garrick, told JIS News. read more

KSAMC Implements New Building Fees Oct 1

Come October 1, the Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC) will be implementing changes to their building fees and requirements for developers and contractors.“The KSAMC will embark on a Ministry-led standardisation of fees across the island. Starting October, the KSAMC will start to charge $135.00 per square metre for residential buildings, which covers four inspections. We will also start to charge $180.00 per square metre for all other user types, and it also covers four inspections,” Deputy Building Surveyor at the KSAMC, Jeremy Lawrence, told JIS News.The previous fees were $65 per square metre for residential buildings and $130 for commercial.The 2019-2020 base fee of $135.00 per square metre covers both single and multi-family residences and the base fee of $180.00 per square metre covers commercial, institutional, resort and industrial buildings. Additional inspections of any building category will cost $5,000.00 each.The standardisation process is slated to last three years and will see all municipal corporations tailoring their fees similarly to those of the KSAMC.Additionally, starting October 1, a Planning Report will be mandatory for all commercial, institutional and resort developments over 500 square metres and subdivisions of 10 lots and more.The reports are to be completed by trained Urban or Regional Planners and cover the existing conditions of the region and site to be developed, as well as the proposed conditions to be included in the design.For more information, persons can contact the Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation’s Planning Department at 876-967-4195 or 876-922-4320. The previous fees were $65 per square metre for residential buildings and $130 for commercial. “The KSAMC will embark on a Ministry-led standardisation of fees across the island. Starting October, the KSAMC will start to charge $135.00 per square metre for residential buildings, which covers four inspections. We will also start to charge $180.00 per square metre for all other user types, and it also covers four inspections,” Deputy Building Surveyor at the KSAMC, Jeremy Lawrence, told JIS News. Story Highlights Come October 1, the Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC) will be implementing changes to their building fees and requirements for developers and contractors. read more