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More needs to be done to stop shady real estate deals: expert

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A UBC political professor believes more needs to be done to stop shady housing deals

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The BC Real Estate Board has taken action against a Richmond brokerage accused of shadow flipping but is that enough to stop questionable housing deals?

UBC’s Tsur Sommerville says there is one thing missing from this ruling. “I am certainly glad the council is taking action but I think I speak for most people [who have] a little disappointment that there aren’t actual punishments.”

“Most of us feel that if there is not any concrete punishment than it really is not going to stop unethical on the part of those people who are inclined to do so,” he explains. “If you are dealing with people who are willing to behave unethically what is going to stop them is the magnitude of the punishment and the likelihood that they will actually get punished, so you got to have those things in place.”

But he believes this is at least an attempt to crack down on unethical real estate deals. “The first step is always the hardest and certainly once you start taking steps it is easier to ramp up enforcement and punishment if that is appropriate.”

He says the council may have to be given more resources to try and stop these kinds of deals.