The UK Association of Letting Agents will not be using Ombudsman Service: Property to provide its dispute resolution service from the start of 2017 and has instead switched to the Property Redress Scheme.
A statement from OS:P - which has been the redress provider to the association since 2013 - says that following UKALA’s decision to have a bidding process, it decided not to pitch. Its current contract with UKALA ends on December 31 2016.
“We’ve enjoyed a close relationship with UKALA since our partnership started in 2014, and it’s with regret that we took the decision not to pitch to be its ongoing redress provider from January 2017 onwards. We’re looking forward to continuing and building on our work with RICS, NALS and ARMA in the property sector, and we wish the sssociation every success in the future” says Lewis Shand Smith, chief Ombudsman and OS:P.
UKALA, which works closely with the National Landlords Association, has as its aims the representation of letting and management agents in the UK, and the safeguarding of the interests of both landlords and tenants in the private rental sector.
Its link with the NLA, announced five years ago, is described by the organisation as representing “an important and progressive step towards a unified voice for landlords and letting agents in the sector.”
A spokesperson for UKALA told Letting Agent Today: A UKALA spokesperson said: “Since April 2014 UKALA agents have benefitted from membership of a government-approved independent redress scheme ... as an integral part of their membership package. We have been happy with the service we received from OS:P, but as a matter of best business practice, initiated a review of the service earlier this year, inviting all three redress schemes to tender.”