As previously reported, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has been consulting on proposals to require all property agents to protect client money.
Following on from an earlier parliamentary inquiry, to which UKALA gave evidence in support of mandating protection, and recommendations by a working group of industry representatives, the Government (finally) seems poised to use the powers introduced by the Housing and Planning Act 2016 allowing for relevant regulations to be made.
Whilst the Government has agreed that membership of a client money protection scheme should be made mandatory, for those property agents which handle client money, views have been sought on a range of details such as:
- The role the Government should play in ensuring provision of CMP
- What specific requirements should be included as part of an approved CMP scheme
- The nature of CMP regulations should impose; and
- What form enforcement action should take.
UKALA remains a strong supporter of a market-led approach to client money protection, ensuring that the good work undertaken by its members and the thousands of professional letting agents in England who already operate in a exemplary fashion is built upon – rather than discarded by a top-down regulatory monolith.
The Association also took the opportunity to advocate for improved enforcement against those firms which choose to operate outside of the law – making life so much more difficult for the rest of us working and living in the private rented sector.
To read UKALA’s response to this latest stage of the Government’s policy making process please click here.