Rogue agents face stiff penalties for flouting property rules

Letting agents and landlords who disregard safety and licensing laws are increasingly facing action from authorities determined to crack down on poor practices and protect renters. Propertymark works hard to regulate our members and make sure consumers know how to access a professional agent. Our members demonstrate their commitment to working to higher standards than the law requires, and have access to training, CPD, and compliance support to ensure both they and their businesses are up to date with relevant standards and legislation.

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Systematic disregard for professional standards

Key Lettings and Property Management has been expelled by The Property Ombudsman after it refused to pay £1,100 of an adjudicated award.

The Ombudsman made a total award of £3,100 to a landlord after examining the original complaint, which covered issues including failure to register deposits, outstanding rent, failure to provide relevant documents to a new letting agent, and a lack of response to the complainant.

The Property Ombudsman, Rebecca Marsh, stated that the expulsion serves as a cautionary message for agents who neglect their duty of care to consumers and fail to fulfil awards made.

Council committed to taking action

Enfield Council has prosecuted two agencies and a director who broke property licensing rules.

Both companies were fined for failure to licence properties in the borough, with Guaranteed Rent GD Ltd. and its director, Mansur Duzgan, each ordered to pay £4,450, and Portfolio Property Services Ltd. ordered to pay £5,451, including a victim surcharge.

The Council stated that it is committed to act against non-compliant landlords, letting and managing agents who break the law.

Inadequate fire safety measures

A Lancashire landlord has been prosecuted after putting the lives and safety of employees and residents at risk.

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service found six breaches of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, including failure to take general fire safety precautions, install fire alarms and ensure people could evacuate quickly and safely.

Angela Chang pleaded guilty to the charges and was sentenced to three months imprisonment and ordered to pay £10,414 in costs to the fire service.

Zero tolerance for non-compliance

The managing agents of an unlicensed HMO in Haringey must pay a civil penalty fine of £8,000 and will be listed on the Greater London Authority Rogue Landlord and Agent Checker database.

The property was found to have been occupied as an HMO for two years with no adequate management arrangements, and there were significant hazards due to inadequate fire protection and precautions.

Calm about compliance

Propertymark's team of experienced agency auditors are available to visit and advise our members on compliance, helping them avoid the hazards that regularly generate local authority fines worth tens of thousands of pounds. 

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Calm about compliance

Calm about Compliance brings our expertise, as the sector's leading professional body, into your office. Our team of experienced auditors will advise you 1:1 on your agency’s compliance, helping you avoid the hazards that regularly lead to local authority fines.

Support for letting agents

Members of Propertymark benefit from our easy to digestfact sheets and FAQs which break down legislation, highlighting the changes, who it applies to and, most importantly, what agents need to do. 

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