Shocking figures from London Trading Standards that reveal 46% of the capital’s 1,922 letting agents inspected by officers were non-compliant with consumer rights or redress scheme membership legislation are proof that mandatory registration and training for agents is a good idea, ARLA has claimed.
“We’re really pleased to see Trading Standards prosecuting bad practice in the industry; it’s the only way to clean up the sector and we’ve been calling for it for a long time,” says David Cox, Chief Executive of ARLA Propertymark.
“It’s also why we have been calling on the Government to regulate letting agents and are pleased that plans are well underway for mandatory registration and training for all letting agents.”
Fines and prosecutions
London Trading Standards also revealed that over the past 15 months agents in the capital have been fined, collectively, £1.2 million for non-compliance with regulations, and that 14 criminal prosecutions have been completed.
“Boroughs are cracking down on rogue letting agents to protect tenants from unfair treatment. As the research shows, this poses a serious challenge in London, where housing pressures are so severe and a significant number of letting agents have been breaking the rules,” says Cllr. Darren Rodwell, London Councils’ Executive Member for Housing and Planning and Leader of Barking and Dagenham Council.
The enforcement survey by London Trading Standards shows that there were over 6,000 letting agents operating across the capital and over 1,000 complaints about them.
Read more about rogue letting agent regulation in London.