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Corporate Governance and Ethical Practice for Property Valuers

The rules deal with all important issues of concern to clients such as confidentiality of customer relationships, the treatment of conflicts of interest or the qualification of valuers.

Introduction

The rules deal with all important issues of concern to clients such as confidentiality of customer relationships, the treatment of conflicts of interest or the qualification of valuers.

During TEGoVA's 2004 General Assembly, all 40 member Associations agreed on new Corporate Governance rules for property valuers to apply throughout Europe.

With this decision, European property valuers respond to the demand for transparency, integrity and independence of valuers undertaking property valuations. In recent years, corporate governance and self commitment rules have become more and more important in Europe . European property valuers have now decided to follow this route and to set European standards for the profession. The new rules are another important part of TEGoVA's efforts to promote best qualification standards for valuers and best practice in educational requirements across Europe.

Rules

1. Independence / Responsibility / Integrity
Valuers will at all times conduct their activities independently, impartially, and with the highest ethical standards. They will be responsible for their assessments.

2. Know How / Application of Recognised Methods
Valuers will only accept such assignments as correspond to their level of technical know how and experience. They will perform the assignments applying know how, prudence and the required technical skills and complying with existing laws, rules, guidelines, and regulations. Property valuers must apply the most recent, recognised methods and procedures for property valuation and comply with valuation standards.

3. Qualification and Continuing Professional Development
Valuers are required to hold and maintain an academic qualification at least equivalent to the TEGoVA Minimum Educational Requirements. Valuers will undertake such Continuing Professional Development as necessary or required by their Association to update themselves on changes to legislation, valuation standards, the real estate market and methodology.

4. Discretion

All files, information, and documents that are made available to valuers with a view to performing their assignments will be treated in strict confidentiality, taking into account regulations on data privacy. Furthermore, valuers must comply with any existing insider regulations (e.g. confidentiality in banking).

5. Reliability of Sources
Only reliable sources may be used as information for the valuations. Property valuers will respect copyrights of third parties. They will only use substantive information supplied by outside sources in the valuation, acknowledging its origin.

6. Conflicts of Interest/ Prevention of Acting for Two or More Clients
If a conflict of interest arises in the course of a valuation assignment, the client must be advised thereof, including all relevant facts. Valuers may only continue such assignments if the client agrees. Valuers may not act for two or more clients on the same matter, save with the express consent of all parties concerned.

7. Efficiency and Diligence
Valuers should act efficiently and make prudent, diligent enquiries to meet best quality standards in their analyses and to satisfy client needs.

8. Fee Transparency
Fees shall be transparent and adapted to the type and scope of the assignment performed; they will be agreed with the client prior to acceptance of the assignment. Any existing regulations governing fees must be complied with.

9. Respectability Concerning Marketing / Competition
Property valuers will conduct themselves respectably in their marketing activities and will present their qualifications only with a view to their skills and experience.

10. Fairness
Valuers will behave fairly, duly respecting the interests of other members of the profession. Valuers will dedicate an appropriate amount of their time to supporting the education and training of newcomers in the profession.