News: Man fined $72,000 for illegal estate agency work

Apr 4, 2019

The unlicensed agent had posted nine online advertisements for the lease of private properties and HDB flats on public property portals.

A 31-year old man was convicted in court of nine charges of conducting estate agency work without being registered as a real estate agent with the Council for Estate Agencies (CEA), reported the Straits Times.

Lim Ruiwen was fined a total of $72,000, in default of 27 weeks jail for the charges.

Lim started as a property agent in January 2011 and worked with Global Alliance Property from 1 January 2016 to 31 December of that year.

When his registration expired after 2016, he did not renew his registration as a property agent via a property agency for the following year. Global Alliance also terminated his services by end-2016.

Despite being unregistered with CEA, Lim posted nine online advertisements for the lease of private properties and Housing Board flats on public property portals between January and March 2017.

He acted as Global Alliance’s sales staff even without being registered.

Lim’s advertisements included his name, mobile number, photograph, previous CEA registration number as well as the name of Global Alliance and its CEA licence.

In sentencing, the court considered 43 other similar charges.

Lim had also posted 43 advertisements for the rental of other private properties and HDB flats on other public property portals.

Each offence carries a maximum fine of $25,000, up to 12 months’ imprisonment, or both.

Meanwhile, CEA has advised consumers to only engage the services of licensed and registered property agents and agencies to help them with their property transactions.

It noted that the public can verify whether an individual is licensed or registered via the public register on the CEA website.

Find licensed property agents who can help you in your Singapore Property search.


Romesh Navaratnarajah, Senior Editor at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email

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Carol Liew
Associate District Director
CEA Licence No.:
L3009250K / R009322C
+(65) 8228 5362