The two letting agents’ trade groups have backed a call for more upfront information to be given to prospective renters.
The National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agent Team says that by providing essential information on property listings and on portals – the starting point for the vast majority of property searches and transactions – “agents will be able to meet their legal requirements at the very beginning of the consumer journey.”
Richard Price, director of the UK Association of Letting Agents, says: “UKALA’s mission is to support letting agents to succeed by improving standards and to promote best practice in the Private Rental Sector and we work closely with a number of bodies, such as National Trading Standards, to do this. We are keen to be involved in initiatives like this that enable UKALA members to operate on a level playing field."
ARLA Propertymark also backs the move, which has won the support of the three major portals as well.
NTSELAT has published a new document called The Case for Change: Improving Provision of Material Information In Property Sales and Lettings.
In addition it has produced the results of a survey of people who have moved in the last three years or are looking to move in the next three years. The survey shows that:
- 90 per cent of respondents who use property portals would prefer to find detailed or key information about a property when they’re searching for a property on a portal;
- 87 per cent of respondents agree that property portals should include all key information about a home in their property listing;
- More than half of respondents said they would be less likely to rent where information was missing on the property listing;
- 40 per cent of respondents assume that missing information means something must be wrong with the property.
NTSELAT is developing guidance for agents to clarify what should be considered as material information.
It says: “To inform this guidance, the team is encouraging estate and letting agents to share their thoughts about what constitutes material information in a new survey launched today."
The deadline for responses is Monday May 17.