The Ontario government passed legislation that will bring the home inspection industry under regulation. At present, home inspectors are a rare example of professionals that have a role in real estate transactions and remain unregulated at the provincial level.
Bill 59, the Putting Consumers First Act, will introduce mandatory qualifications and licensing for home inspectors and set minimum standards for contracts, home inspection reports, disclosures and the performance of home inspections. The proposed legislation reflects a 16-member expert panel’s 35 recommendations, which both consumers and industry endorsed, the Ontario government stated in a news release.
The Putting Consumers First Act also introduces new rules for door-to-door sales and payday loans.
“The Putting Consumers First Act strengthens consumer protection at home and in the marketplace,” Minister of Government and Consumer Services Tracy MacCharles said in the release. “New regulations will ensure that people aren’t being taken advantage of through unsolicited door-to-door sales — that home buyers get regulated home inspection services — and that consumers receive fair and transparent payday loan and debt collection options.”
The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) welcomed the news in a release issued this afternoon.
“OREA is pleased to hear that Bill 59 passed in the Ontario legislature which will license home inspectors and regulate the home inspection industry,” Ettore Cardarelli, president of OREA, stated in the release. “Ontario REALTORS® look forward to working with the province as it moves towards the implementation of this important bill, which will help consumers receive reliable information and high professional standards on one of the biggest purchases of their lives.”