'COLORUM' AGENTS. Screengrab shows members of the Philippine Association of Real Estate Boards Inc. (PAREB) during the Cebu Real Estate Board Inc. general membership meeting on Friday (April 8, 2022). PAREB senior vice president Engr. Jovencio Cainong lamented the proliferation of “colorum” real estate agents who continue to “unscrupulously dupe buyers”. (Screengrab from Zoom)

CEBU CITY – The Philippine Association of Real Estate Boards Inc. (PAREB) has lamented the proliferation of “colorum” real estate agents who continue to “unscrupulously dupe” buyers despite a law regulating the practice of real estate service. 
During the general membership meeting of their association’s Cebu Real Estate Board Inc. and on the occasion of its 62nd anniversary celebration Friday, PAREB senior vice president Jovencio Cainong  said unlicensed brokers are already dominating Marketplace in Facebook.
“After 13 years of the implementation of RESA (Real Estate Service Act), there is a continued proliferation of unlicensed practitioners or colorums," he said.
Cainong  said no person is allowed by law to practice real estate service if he has no license from the government, while real estate salesperson should be accredited and transact business under the direct supervision of a duly-licensed real estate broker.
He said those who are not working under a licensed broker violating Republic Act 9646, also known as the RESA law, will be fined PHP100,000 or imprisonment of not less than two years or both.  
He added that a person who sells real property without a license commits a criminal offense.
Unlicensed real estate practitioners include not only locals but also foreigners from China, Korea, India, Japanese, and other countries.
Cainong said agents who are using Facebook are competing licensed real estate brokers and salespersons who are duly registered to transact such business.
“Ninety percent of real estate salespersons on Facebook are unlicensed,” Cainong said, adding the continued operation of colorum agents have resulted in loss of income for the licensed real estate practitioners and poses a high risk for the buyers.
Cainong said buyers are at risk of being offered fictitious properties or even with problematic titles if they transact with unlicensed agents.
Agents who are under a licensed broker can get advice on the proper way of processing real estate transactions, he said.
Cainong said only a few segments of the population are aware that there are professionals whom they can deal with in terms of real estate brokering, appraisal, and consultancy.  
He also urged prospective buyers of house and lot to be wary of sellers of illegal subdivisions, saying there is a boom of illegal subdivisions from Aparri to Jolo.
He added agricultural lands are also being developed into residential subdivisions, which is a violation to the local government units’ zoning laws, much less its effect on the country’s food security and threats to the climate. (PNA)