It was introduced to protect landlords and tenants while eradicating poor quality housing. It states that it will 'help raise standards (where this is needed) and help build a more effective Private Rented Sector that meets the needs of tenants, landlords and letting agents'. Read the Code of Practice...
The Housing (Scotland) Act gives powers to the Scottish Government to create a Code of Practice and introduces new rules, which all letting agents must follow. Read this fact sheet to see how the code of practice affects you.
The Housing (Scotland) Act was passed on 1 August 2014 and sets out the Scottish Government’s plan to improve levels of service and professionalism from letting agents.
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Visit the Scottish Government website's letting agent registration guide for more information on how to apply, training, qualifications and how to renew your registration.
Joining the Letting Agent Register
Qualifications and training
Registration requires evidence that everyone in your business (who needs to) has the relevant qualification covering the essential aspects of residential letting. The qualification must be SCQF Level 6 or above.
Propertymark Qualifications is one of four training providers approved by the Scottish Government. If you achieved the Level 6 Award in Residential Letting and Property Management within the last three years then you meet the training requirement. You will need to do 20 hours additional training if you passed the qualification over three years ago.
Fit and proper persons test
Everyone applying to be on the register will need to meet the standards laid out in a ‘fit and proper person test’. If you apply on behalf of your company, the Scottish Government may need to conduct the test on multiple people within the company.
Client Money Protection (CMP) and professional indemnity insurance
All agencies must ensure they hold client money in a dedicated client account. Many agents have found that banks and building societies provide ARLA Propertymark members easier access to dedicated accounts. You must also belong to a Client Money Protection (CMP) scheme and hold Professional indemnity insurance. Our CMP scheme meets the levels required in the Code of Practice.
What happens if i do not register?
It is a criminal offence to carry out letting agency work in Scotland if you are not on the register—with the possibility of fines of up to £50,000 and prison sentences of up to six months for those convicted.
The application fee is for a three-year registration and the fee you pay is determined by the number of offices your business has where letting agency work is carried out.
14 applications from agents requesting a letting agent register number (LARN) have been refused by the Scottish Government, with the specifics for the refusals not yet specified in the most recent update, however, details for some of the refusals will be published shortly.
The number of approved letting agents managing properties in Scotland now totals 889 with applications still undergoing the registration processes.
The number of letting agents in Scotland who are now operating with a Letting Agent Registration Number (LARN) stands at 863. With 32 applications having been withdrawn.
The number of letting agents in Scotland who are now operating with a Letting Agent Registration Number (LARN) stands at 837 from 977 applications received by the Scottish Government.
The number of letting agents in Scotland who have now been issued with a Letting Agent Registration Number (LARN) now stands at 687 from the 938 applications received by the Scottish Government.
The Scottish Government has confirmed 562 agents have had their applications approved and have now been issued with a Letting Agent Registration Number (LARN). This is on a total of 914 applications received to date.
As the Leasehold Reform (Ground Rent) Bill makes its way through Parliament, Propertymark’s research was used to explain why the Bill is the first step in addressing the scandal leaseholders have faced for years.
Three property agents across the UK have been excluded from the TPO for failing to pay outstanding awards. This shows how it continues to be crucial to improve the quality and reputation of the profession by regulating the property sector.