Regulation is coming to the property sector
ARLA Propertymark are urging their members to become compliant with the Regulation of Property Agents (RoPA) report recommendations before changes become official.
“There are substantial changes ahead, which will require agents to start preparing now to ensure they are well placed for when the proposed qualification and regulatory requirements are introduced”.
They are anticipating that the need for property qualifications will be phased in. They have advised agents to get ahead of the competition and to stand out by adopting the new requirements early.
The independent report has been crafted by the working group, which is made up of industry and consumer experts. They have examined the options available for raising standards across the property agent sector.
The RoPA report proposes a new regulatory framework which would cover estate agents across the UK but letting and managing agents in England only.
Recommendations in the report include:
- All agencies operating a residential property business should be licensed and licensing should include a fit and proper person test
- A new regulator to be appointed to oversee compliance with an overarching Code of Practice
- Staff delivering ‘reserved activities’ should be licensed and adhere to a Code of Practice
- All start delivering ‘reserved activities’ should hold a regulated sector qualification to a minimum of Level 3, preferably with directors qualified to Level 4
Propertymark have noted that although the framework proposals are not yet Government policy, that they advocate for this in order to raise higher professional standards in the industry.
Other information to consider:
- Only individuals can hold qualifications
- The group recommends that Government create a list of ‘reserved activities’ which can only be performed by a licensed individual at a regulated firm
- Every property agency would be responsible for ensuring both that their staff are trained to the appropriate level and that clear oversight arrangements are in place for staff, with continuing professional development requirements applying to licensed agents.
To read the full report, click here.
ARLA Propertymark. (2019). Regulation is coming to the sector. Accessible: https://www.arla.co.uk/news/october-2019/regulation-is-coming-to-the-sector/. Last Accessed: 2 October 2019.
Gov.uk. (2019). Regulation of Property Agents: working group report. Accessible: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/regulation-of-property-agents-working-group-report. Last Accessed: 2 October 2019.