Property Ombudsman again calls for all letting agents to have Client Money Protection

The Property Ombudsman has again asked Landlords to carefully choose only Agents who have Client Money Protection (CMP) following several cases where landlords have lost thousands of pounds in rental income by dealing with agents without cover against their own fraud.

CMP is not a condition of membership of The Property Ombudsman but about 80% of their members are thought to have CMP, either through membership of a body such as ARLA or Propertymark or insurance.

Critics say that CMP should not be available to agents who are, potentially, crooks operating outside any trade or professional body.

The Chief operating Officer of The Property Ombudsman, Gerry Fitzjohn, said: “As the UK’s largest property redress scheme, it’s truly upsetting to hear of cases where landlords have lost thousands of pounds in rent paid to an agent that has been used unlawfully and cannot be recovered because the agent did not have CMP cover in place.

“Rather than choose to use an agent that charges the lowest fee, landlords must ask if the agent has a CMP policy in place to protect their rental income.

“Within the industry, thousands of agents are already CMP protected, but there are still a number of firms that are unaware of the scale of protection it offers.

“With more people renting now than ever before, landlords and agents need to understand that CMP provides the guaranteed assurance that the rent collected by CMP-protected agents is covered against fraud and unlawful use”

Belvoir Dunstable are members of The property Ombudsman, Propertymark and Safe Agent