Former high-flyer with record tally of disciplinary findings ‘has made mistakes’ but wants to rebuild reputation.

An Auckland real estate agent who has racked up more disciplinary breaches than any other has now admitted reckless misconduct and his licence is on the line.

Aaron Drever admits he's made mistakes and previously blamed the sheer volume of sales for his list of aggrieved clients after earning millions of dollars in commission.

The once high-flying agent has notched up a record nine disciplinary findings during a 13-year career that's included stints with RE/MAX, Ray White and Harcourts. Three of these findings are under appeal. Second to him is an agent with six adverse findings and another has four.

Drever, who surrendered his licence voluntarily this year, added to his tally this week when he admitted to a "reckless" misconduct charge before the Real Estate Agents Disciplinary Tribunal relating to the sale of three West Auckland homes.

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A Herald investigation can reveal:

He failed to provide appraisals for homes supported by comparative sales data, provide necessary documentation to sellers, or set out how the properties would be marketed when clients signed agency agreements.

When bringing a customer to view a client's property, Drever told the seller words to the effect of, "Shut your mouth, don't say a word, they're my clients".

In an earlier finding, the Complaints Assessment Committee found he had likely secured a longer settlement period for a fourth complainant in return for her withdrawing a complaint about him, which was labelled "tantamount to blackmail". This matter is under appeal.

Wendy Lowe, who enlisted Drever to sell her home in 2013 and is one of the three misconduct complainants, believed he hadn't changed and should lose his license.

"He is in a registered occupation with a code of practice. People trust him. You shouldn't be able to have this job if you've proven you're unworthy of it."

Drever's disciplinary history stretches back to November 2011 and includes seven unsatisfactory conduct findings and two of misconduct.

He faced a police charge in 2014 after depositing more than $15,000 of client marketing funds into his own account. The criminal charge was dropped when he repaid the money.

A prosecutor described Drever's actions as "an appalling lack of judgment" and the REAA unsuccessfully sought an interim suspension of his licence.

Drever, 33, later joined Ray White's Pure Realty franchise in Kelston and became one of the company's top international salespeople. But he was dumped last year after a misconduct finding before being employed by Harcourts' New Lynn office.

He was dropped by Harcourts after the Weekend Herald published an account of his previous offending.

In a tearful interview last year, Drever blamed the sheer volume of sales work for his repeated breaches, but said lucrative commission money was only a "secondary focus" as he cared for his terminally ill father.

He also said he knew of countless cases of unethical behaviour among his peers.

In a statement yesterday, Drever accepted he had made mistakes and that it would take time to rebuild his reputation and public confidence in his ability to work as a real estate agent.

RE/MAX director Chris Chapman said he could not comment on the latest disciplinary hearing outcome as he was yet to see it. Drever left the network's Hedgman Realty in October 2013.

Chapman added that the "disciplinary tribunal may order compensation to a complainant if appropriate to the circumstances".

Australia-based Ray White spokeswoman Lisa Pennell said Ray White elected to end the relationship with Drever "because of the misconduct findings made by the REAA".

Harcourts chief executive Chris Kennedy confirmed the company had ended its dealings with Drever.

Drever will learn his fate at a penalty hearing in October.

The findings:
Aug 2016

Joint misconduct finding

35 Archibald Rd, Kelston

Marie van Eijk sold her Kelston home through Aaron Drever in August 2013 for $441,000 to a property investment company.

The property was subsequently re-listed by Drever when he went to Ray White and on-sold by one of his colleagues. It was sold in December that year for $585,000 after undergoing significant renovation costing $106,000.

Investigators found Drever had failed to provide an appraisal supported by comparable sales data or explain how the property would be marketed when his client signed an agency agreement.

Eijk, a retired 68-year-old from the Cook Islands, told the Herald Drever was a "fast talker - very good with words".

She believed he should lose his licence.

"I would be very disappointed if he goes back to practice."

Awaiting penalty.

Aug 2016

Joint misconduct finding

99 Grassmere Rd, Henderson Valley

David Deyermond sold his Henderson Valley home through Drever in 2013 for $705,000.
Investigators found Drever had failed to provide an appraisal supported by comparable sales data or explain how the property would be marketed when his client signed an agency agreement.

When bringing clients to view the property, Drever also told Deyermond words to the effect of, "Shut your mouth, don't say a word, they're my clients".

Deyermond, 66, told the Herald he could not understand how Drever was allowed to continue practising as his track record worsened.

"He should be banned for life from holding a licence for real estate to save any further hurt or stress on people who place their properties to sell in his hands."

Awaiting penalty.

Aug 2016

Joint misconduct finding

52B James Laurie St, Henderson
Wendy Lowe enlisted Drever to sell her Henderson home in 2013 but later cancelled the agreement and switched agencies.

Investigators found Drever failed to provide an appraisal supported by comparable sales data or explain how the property would be marketed when his client signed an agency agreement.

Lowe, 58, told the Herald she was stunned to learn that thousands of dollars in marketing funds she paid to Drever had been deposited into his own account, rather than the RE/MAX agency's trust account.

She eventually cancelled the agreement and believed Drever hadn't changed.
Awaiting penalty.

March 17, 2016

Unsatisfactory conduct finding (under appeal)

Failed to follow the complainants' instructions and failed to inform the complainants about matters relating to the sale of the property.

Censured, fined $5000 and ordered to pay complainants $2246.80.

March 11, 2016

Unsatisfactory conduct finding (under appeal)

Pressured the complainants to sign a variation to the sale and purchase agreement.

Failed in his obligations to the complainants as he went overseas and did not delegate his ongoing transactions to another licensee.

Censured, fined $10,000 and ordered to pay costs of $575 to complainants.

Dec 17, 2015

Unsatisfactory conduct finding (under appeal)

21A Kelwyn Rd, Kelston

Failed to get keys from the complainant for the photographer at the arranged time and failed to provide copies of photographs to the complainant. Failed to provide marketing reports on open homes or advise the complainant he would miss meetings or was running late.

Also pressured the homeowner to withdraw her complaint regarding his conduct.

The Complaints Assessment Committee labelled this "tantamount to blackmail" and noted with concern the number of previous disciplinary findings against Drever.

"The committee agrees with the complainant that something needs to be done about this licensee so that the public can be protected."

Censured, fined $8000 and ordered to refund $10,000.

Dec 18, 2014

Misconduct finding

Put vendor monies at risk by banking marketing funds directly into his own bank account rather than through the agency.

Fined $5000, ordered to pay costs of $2000 and undertake a refresher education course.

Drever also faced a police charge in relation to the money deposits but the criminal charge was dropped when he repaid the money.

Warned by the Real Estate Disciplinary Tribunal "his licence will very likely be at serious risk of suspension or revocation" if he appeared again on serious offending charges.

April 14, 2014

Unsatisfactory conduct finding

Along with another agent, made errors and omissions in respect to the preparation and signing of a sale and purchase agreement and did not clarify the final sale price, causing the vendors to be overcharged commission.

Fined $3500, ordered to refund $2177.29 in fees.

Aug 27, 2013

Unsatisfactory conduct finding

Did not have an accurate listing agreement in place to support his claim of commission.
Censured, fined $3500 and ordered to undergo training.

Dec 13, 2012

Unsatisfactory conduct finding

Failed to give a copy of the required guide to the complainant prior to signing the sale and purchase agreement or give them adequate time to seek legal advice. Failed to provide all information provided by vendor to the complainant. Failed to correct marketing after being advised by the Real Estate Agents Authority to do so.

Censured, fined $2500 and ordered him to pay the complainant $1035 in costs.

Nov 4, 2011

Unsatisfactory conduct finding

Along with another agent, failed to advise the complainant during the negotiation process that the settlement date had been changed from that stated in his written instructions.

Censured and ordered to reimburse the complainant $1463.15.