History of Bahamas Real Estate
The Bahamas Real Estate Association (BREA) was formed in 1959. Its objective was to unite Real Estate Brokers as well as to maintain the highest standard of conduct in the transaction of Real Estate in the Bahamas as expressed in their code of Ethics. Secondly, to prevent non- Bahamian or any other unauthorized persons to transact the business of real estate brokerage in the Bahamas.
In 1960, an attempt to have the real estate industry regulated by introducing suitable legislation was quashed and unfortunately these initial efforts were not successful. By the end of 1960, BREA was no longer active.
In 1962 BREA was again reorganized, however Real Estate in the Bahamas was still not regulated, allowing anybody who paid for a license to become a Real Estate Broker without any previous training experience or regulation.
In 1995 The Bahamas Government passed the long awaited Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons Act-1995, granting BREA the authority to license, register and regulate all persons selling Real Estate in the Bahamas. Bi-lateral agreements with the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and other International Real Estate Associations were formed. Today, all Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons must adhere to rigid educational and performance standards before becoming licensed. Some of the top Bahamian Realtors hold International designations like the CRS Certified Residential Specialist and the CIPS the Certified International Property Specialist as well as the local Bahamian designation BRI.
There are now Realtors in the Bahamas who can converse in several foreign languages such as Spanish, French, German, Italian just to name a few, making it easy for anybody to purchase property in the Bahamas. That along with the passage of the International Persons Land Holding Act-1993 facilitated the purchase of land by non- Bahamians.
Now, more than 50 years after the formation of BREA, there are over 600 licensed Brokers and Salespersons in the Bahamas who are all familiar with the local building codes, location of schools, churches, and local knowledge that only a BREA agent could know.