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The Property Investment Professionals of Australia chairman is calling for regulation in the property investment advice space to “drive out crooks” and protect consumers.

According to the chairman of the Property Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA), Peter Koulizos, regulation is needed in the property investment space as “there is currently no legislation to protect consumers from dodgy operators pretending to be property investment experts”.

Mr Koulizos issued the call after warning that the Labor Party’s proposal to restrict negative gearing to new property could “flood the market with spruikers and endanger the financial lives of thousands of Australians”.

“When you financially incentivise people to buy a particular product, spruikers are not far behind because they see an opportunity to make a lot of cash very quickly,” he said.

“It will be like the pink batts fiasco all over again, which was another terrible Labor policy,” Mr Koulizos said. “This time, it is an ill-conceived negative gearing proposal that is being rolled out too quickly and is likely to have financially catastrophic consequences for investors.”

The PIPA chairman added that people could invest “hundreds of thousands of dollars into properties that are likely to be overpriced and inferior in every way possible” if the Labor initiative was implemented with no regulation of the sector.

“If Labor’s absurd policy comes in, expect more investors to lose their life savings to corrupt charlatans who have no fear of the consequences because of the lack of regulation in the property investment advice space,” Mr Koulizos said.

He added that due to the lack of regulation, PIPA has developed its own codes of ethics and conduct, which all of its members voluntarily agree to abide with and that he hopes provides investors with “confidence in a marketplace where trust is so lacking and where multimillion-dollar fines to spruikers highlight what is at stake”.



Reporter, Mortgage Business, 7 May 2019