Housing minister Eddie Hughes has dodged a question on whether the government intends to implement Lord Best’s Regulation of Property Agents (RoPA) report, throwing into doubt the government commitment to implement its proposals.
It is now more than two years since the RoPA report was sent to civil servants and ministers for consideration, and new shadow housing minister Matthew Pennycook took advantage of a debate in parliament to press Hughes on the matter.
The debate considered the role of management companies in the ongoing leasehold scandal and the government’s attempt to solve it.
“On protecting the owners of new homes from abuse and poor service at the hands of disreputable management companies, I ask the Minister to tell the House whether the Government intend to implement the recommendations of the regulation of property agents working group, chaired by the noble Lord Best,” he said.
“What progress has been made on that, given that the final report was published back in July 2019?”.
But no answer was given by the minister during the remainder of the debate, which was steered by DLUHC select committee chairman Clive Betts, MP.
Timothy Douglas (pictured), Policy and Campaigns Manager at Propertymark, says: “In a wide-ranging debate on new homes, developers, housebuilders and management companies the Shadow Minister asked about the recommendations in the RoPA report.
“This shows the continued appetite from politicians for reform although we acknowledge that facilitating change on this scale as well as finding a legislative vehicle to take it forward is no easy task.
“The sector has a new Secretary of State, a Planning Bill is expected and the Renters’ Reforms White Paper has been pushed back for further engagement with the industry and to allow consideration of the National Audit Office’s report into regulation of private renting.
“Propertymark remains at the forefront for positive change within the sector and continues to push for the regulation of property agents to form part of the UK Government’s plans.”