Row breaks out over 'divisive' ARLA leaflet
Tuesday 4th October 2011
A row has broken out over a leaflet promoting ARLA licensed agents to consumers.
The leaflet fails to mention both ARLA members who are not licensed, and NAEA members who also handle lettings.
It also says that using any agent other than an ARLA licensed member could cause consumers financial loss.
The leaflet says: “A licensed ARLA agent is qualified and is required to keep up to date with the latest developments in the market and with the changing legislation affecting letting and property management.
“Without this knowledge and expertise, whether you’re a tenant or a landlord, you may be badly advised or misled – or you may even suffer financial loss as a result.”
The leaflet urges consumers to look on the ARLA website to check whether ‘your local letting and property management agent is licensed by ARLA’.
The leaflet has been sent to ARLA licensed agents, who are invited to display it in their offices, and to purchase more leaflets if they want. ARLA licensed members have also been sent a new window sticker.
The accompanying letter, which is headed by NAEA, ARLA, NAVA and ICBA logos, says: “We will be ensuring that, wherever possible, we tell the public that they must only use an ARLA Licensed Agent.
“However, we really need your help to achieve this. Please inform potential clients of your status by placing the enclosed sticker in a prominent position in the window of your office.
“This will offer you a marketing advantage and greater credibility than your unlicensed competitors.”
But the leaflet has not gone down well with everyone, with some agents expressing their disquiet.
One ARLA licensed member said he was astonished that the leaflet made no mention of non-licensed ARLA members, while Trevor Kent, an NAEA member and former president whose business offers both sales and lettings, said the leaflet was thoroughly divisive.
He said: “But it’s even worse than marginalisation of NAEA members, who of course have all the same public rental protection safeguards as ARLA.
“As I have been pointing out for ages, it is also ‘non-licensed’ members of ARLA and NAEA who are being spun against by their own associations.
“I really don’t see how NAEA, ARLA and NFoPP can live with themselves in following this divisive and ultimately self-destructive policy of inciting the public to only use ‘half of their own members’.
“We non-licensed members pay the same but soon won’t even be able to show a logo – unbelievable!
“Frankly, and I am really sorry to say this about an organisation I have served and promoted for free for decades, but I would not be surprised to see mass non-renewals at the end of the year.
“Will I have to reprint my cards with FNAEA MARLA RIP soon?"
DISCLAIMER:The views contained in these user comments are not endorsed by Letting Agent Today(nor its associates and advertisers) in any way and are provided by users who wish to publish their independent opinions on our news.Whilst every effort is made to moderate these comments,due to the instant nature of the posting not all offensive material can be removed instantly.Please help us keep the comments areas tidy by reporting details of any infringements to email@example.com
Editorial Contact Details - Rosalind Renshaw