Nice to be contacted by Hillingdon Council Trading Standards today. They wanted contact details as they are sweeping all Hillingdon Letting Agents and Property Managers for compliance with recent legislation.
Nice to be contacted by Hillingdon Council Trading Standards today. They wanted my contact details as they are sweeping all Hillingdon Letting Agents and Property Managers for compliance with recent legislation.
But what exactly are they looking at?
The Consumer Rights Act 2015. Duty of letting agents to publicise fees.
Agents should display fees for tenants and landlords on their website and premises.
In the past this is something we do and only half the other agents comply with. Take up has been poor. Nice that there will be a level playing field.
The Enterprise & Regulation Reform Act 2013, Redress schemes: lettings and property management agents
Agents should be a member of one of three Government approved redress schemes.
These schemes allow tenants or landlords a route to bring a 'case' against an agent without having to go to the trouble of a legal case.
The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008
"Please ensure that your business is legitimately using and displaying logos such as ARLA, NAEA, RICIS, SAFEAGENT, NALS, LLAS, LSR, UKALA, TDS, DPS, MY DEPOSITS, TPOS, PRS, & OS(P). Where your membership has lapsed, or you have never been a member you are not entitled to use these logos and they should be removed, from trade premises, websites, stationery, literature, and invoices."
That's a lot of initials! Belvoir Uxbridge are current members of SAFEAGENT, NALS, DPS and TPOS.
The Companies Act 2006 & The Company Limited Liability Partnership and the Business (Names and Trading Disclosures) Regulations 2015
Law/Regulations covering the display and disclosure of company names and other particulars, on trade premises, websites and stationery.
Happy to comply.
Thank You Hillingdon Council
Hillingdon have given agents either 7 or 14 days to comply and some will be visited to check on-site compliance. As a Belvoir office we are audited by Belvoir on a regular basis so are used to these kinds of checks. It's good to see Hillingdon driving up standards locally and ensuring compliance.
Now if the government would only make it mandatory for agents to have client money protection or insurance for landlords and tenants monies they are holding the lettings industry would be a better place...