A Richmond-based realtor has been suspended and fined for misconduct related to a series of transactions in 2014 and 2015.
New Coast Realty’s Jing (Sandra) Li was handed a 45-day suspension last week by the Real Estate Council of BC.
Li has also been fined $10,000 and was ordered to pay another $10,000 to cover the cost of the council’s investigation.
In the consent order posted on the council’s website, Li admitted failing to supervise an unlicensed assistant who was providing real estate services on her behalf.
On one of the sales in question, the assistant was paid more than $21,000 in commission.
According to the order, Li denied the payment was in exchange for real estate services and was instead to assist her helper "with the financing of her purchase" of a property.
Documents also claim that three of the files concerned purchases involving a director of New Coast Realty — who is identified in the order as “Z.W.”
In one of purchases, Li failed to prepare documents disclosing to the seller of a $3.8 million house in Richmond that the buyer who she represented had actually assigned the contract to purchase the home over to Z.W.
In another, she acted as the buyer's agent for Z.W. for the purchase of a $1.6 million home in Richmond, but Li failed to draft an addendum revealing that the director had assigned the contract to purchase the house over to her.
The order added that Li was also reprimanded for failing to disclose a $3,750 referral fee paid in relation to the sale of $2 million home in which agents for New Coast realty represented both the sellers and buyers.
According to the documents, Li also failed to disclose to the seller "in a timely manner" that she and another agent would be splitting a $27,750 commission until more than six months after the sale had gone through.
In a statement, New Coast told media that none of the files came as the result of a consumer complaint and that five were opened following an internal audit by the council.
New Coast added that where non-compliance with records and documentation were identified, "they were quickly remedied."
It went on to laud Li as one of the leading realtors in the Lower Mainland.
New Coast was also in the headlines in April when another of its realtors, Xinwei (Sylvie) Zhao, was fined after tricking a buyer to display a New Coast Realty “sold” sign outside the property for a year.
Zhao was fined $2,000 by the Real Estate Council for BC after she informed a buyer’s agent that the offer on the property would only be presented and accepted by the seller if the buyer agreed to put a New Coast Realty “sold” sign on the property for one year.
She did so, according to the council, “without the seller’s consent or knowledge, and on the instructions of her team leader.”
In 2016, New Coast was at the centre of and council investigation into the firm’s operations after media reports into the practice of "shadow flipping."
At the time, New Coast denied any wrongdoing, claiming that it followed all the rules and regulations.
The provincial government then decided to end self-regulation of the real estate industry.