Consultation response: Mandatory client money protection for property agents

By: Rhea Newman  Published: December 2017


Shelter's response to the Department for Communities and Local Government's consultation on the implementation of mandatory client money protection for property agents.

Summary

Shelter strongly supports the introduction of mandatory client money protection for property agents and welcomes the opportunity to respond to this consultation on how this will be implemented.


Shelter agrees there should be minimum terms and conditions of cover and approved standards to ensure that client money protection schemes offer consistent protection to all landlords and tenants who entrust their money to agents. As with any regulation it will be important to ensure the requirements are properly enforced and there are meaningful sanctions for those that do not comply. Shelter would recommend that enforcement should sit with Trading Standards, however county councils may need additional resources to take on this role given their growing enforcement responsibilities.


The lettings market is currently undergoing considerable change and it will be important to ensure that any upcoming changes are coordinated and consumers are made aware of any new regulations so they only work with agents who are compliant. As such, Shelter welcomes the suggestion that the Lead Enforcement Agency introduced in the draft Tenant Fees Bill could play a role in overseeing all letting agent regulation to support this coordination and to lead on raising awareness.

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