Portals, Agencies Join Forces to Tackle Fake Listings

November 5, 2021
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Two of Singapore’s leading property portals, along with leading real estate agencies will join forces to eliminate dummy and duplicate property listings.

The formation of the Alliance for Action (AfA) on Accurate Property Listings, with support of the city state’s Council for Estate Agencies (CEA), will explore ways of authenticating property listings.

Co-leading the AfA is the Singapore Estate Agents Association, Property Guru and 99.co, along with the five largest real estate agencies.

Lim Chee Hwee, Executive Director of CEA, said: “The AfA on Accurate Property Listings seeks to provide a transparent, efficient and reliable property listing search experience for property consumers and their property agents. We are delighted to have the various key stakeholders in the real estate industry coming together and taking ownership to improve the property transaction process for property consumers and property agents."

Anyone searching for property online has found attractive listings that turn out to be fake. This has been an ongoing problem for years – and one that comes with serious implications.

Darius Cheung, Chief Executive Officer of Singapore portal 99.co, said: “Fake listings are a huge problem. Not only is it annoying and dangerous for consumers, it is also a massive productivity sink for property agencies and portals. However, none of us can solve it alone, which is why it remains unsolved despite a clear winning outcome.”

The current proposal aims to develop a prototype digital platform to conduct checks on the authenticity of a property listing and assign a unique serial number to each property before it gets the green light to be published in the listing portals. This prototype is slated to be built by mid-2022.

When created, dummy or duplicate property advertisements can be completely eliminated from the listing portals to create a more positive user experience where individuals looking to buy or rent a property will no longer experience the frustration of searching non-genuine listings.

“By driving towards 100% authenticated listings, we can greatly uplift consumer experience and agent productivity, and professionalism and trust in the estate agency industry. Building trust and simplicity have been the founding principles for 99 and we are proud to be part of this initiative and are committed to see it transform the industry,” added Cheng.

Singapore’s Council for Estate Agencies (CEA) is a statutory board established in 2010 under the Estate Agents Act to regulate and promote the development of a professional and trusted real estate agency industry. Its key responsibilities are to license property agencies and register property agents, promote the integrity and competence of property agencies and property agents, and equip consumers with the necessary knowledge to make informed decisions in property transactions involving property agents.

November 5, 2021
Andrew is an experienced media and content professional, with extensive publishing experiences throughout Southeast Asia and in the United Kingdom. He has worked on the editorial and content operations for property portals including PropertyGuru and Juwai. He was also the Publishing Director for the Thai language edition of BusinessWeek magazine.

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