Five Frequently Asked Questions for RECA’s Trust Assurance and Practice Review
| December 11, 2013
As part of its desire to continually improve its services to industry members, RECA will be publishing a series of FAQs from each of its departments.
Below are the top five frequently asked questions from industry professionals that relate to RECA’s Trust Assurance and Practice Review unit.
Fiscal year end filing
1. I do not have a trust account, do I still have to file?
Yes, every brokerage must file within 3 months of their fiscal year end. If there have not been any trust funds received, a declaration of absence of trust transactions (F4) must be filed.
2. How do I file a F4 online?
An F4 is filed using RECA online. A step-by-step for how to file the F4 is available on the RECA website by clicking here.
3. I have only had one trust deposit, do I still have to engage an accountant to complete my report?
Yes, even if you have only one deposit you still must file an accountant’s report as part of the reporting process.
4. The brokerage has been holding a buyer’s deposit in its trust account for more than two years since the deposit was payable to the buyer. The brokerage cannot find the buyer, what should it do with those trust funds?
When money has been held in a trust account for more than two years after the date on which it became payable, and the industry member, using reasonable efforts, is unable to locate the person to whom it is payable – the industry member is to pay the money to the Alberta Real Estate Foundation (AREF) (section 25(5) of the Real Estate Act).
The brokerage must provide AREF with the name of the person for whom it was holding the money and why the funds are unclaimed. If a broker has questions, they may wish to contact the AREF prior to sending the money.
5. Can I have funds deposited directly into my trust account?
Yes, funds can be deposited directly into a trust account. This includes both sales/lease deposits and rents from tenants. The equivalent of a deposit slip should be prepared by recording all the details of the deposit.