The Association of Residential Letting Agents and The Guild of Property Professionals have both given their backing to the government’s latest injection of funds into helping councils combat rogue agents and landlords.
The Guild’s in-house compliance officer, Paul Offley, says: “We fully support this initiative as it will ensure that rogue landlords and letting agents are punished for breaking the law and it will also ensure that more tenants are treated fairly. With the funding providing councils with a means to crack down on illegal activity in the lettings market, tenants will have more protection and the standards of the rental sector will be raised.”
He continues, “An environment where exploitative landlords are stamped out will enable good landlords and letting agents to thrive. The Guild has a very strict code of conduct to ensure its members provide a full regulatory service to both landlords and tenants. We also provide Trading Standards approved training on all lettings legislation to our members to ensure they are aware of their legal responsibilities.
“As part of The Guild’s commitment to increasing industry standards and ensuring that our Members are compliant, we also regularly undertake due diligence checks. As an organisation, we strive to ensure that our members are seen as the professionals they are, so we welcome any government initiative which will assist in weeding out those who are tarnishing the property industry.”
Meanwhile David Cox, ARLA’s chief executive, says: “In isolation this is not enough to make a real difference; sustained investment is essential to provide effective enforcement, ensure training for local authority staff, remove criminal operators and protect tenants.
“We continue to call on government for mandatory regulation of the sector and an open database of rogue landlords and letting agents which will deliver better housing standards across the country.”