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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Ban the Rogue Agents! NALS helps councils get tough

The National Approved Letting Scheme has published the latest version of its Effective Enforcement Toolkit - aimed at helping councils clamp down on rogue letting agents.

Originally published in 2016, it is aimed at tackling lettings and management firms who fail to comply with the law, particularly around the display of fees and membership of redress and CMP schemes. 

It provides councils with a guide to the legalities and requirements of regulating agents in a format which, it says, is designed to help protect tenants and landlords. 

The updated version now references over 50 tribunal decisions from across England; NALS says this latest version will assist enforcement officers to correctly interpret the legislation while providing a useful benchmark for assessing the appropriate level of penalties.

The toolkit - created by Richard Tacagni from the London Property Licensing housing consultancy and by London Trading Standards - will be updated again next year following the introduction of mandatory client money protection.

“The response from local authorities who use the toolkit has been enormously positive and we are pleased to support them to ensure those who flout the law do not go unpunished. With legislation in the private rented sector constantly evolving, it was important to keep the Toolkit up-to-date and relevant to the work of enforcement officers” explains NALS chief executive Isobel Thomson. 

Alex Mckeown, lead officer for lettings at the Chartered Trading Standards Institute, says: “It breaks the legislation down into a step-by-step guide and encourages a more consistent approach to enforcement.”

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