The Westminster government has been accused of lagging behind its welsh and Scottish counterparts with regard to the regulation of the rental sector by the Association of Residential Letting Agents. Today the Scottish government is due to announce a planned review of the private rented sector and at the same time the welsh government is due to introduce a new housing bill before the end of its assembly term, as well as a code of conduct.
ARLA said: “These announcements contrast with the current Westminster Government’s opposition to regulation of the sector. If this opposition continues, tenants in England are still at risk from rogue letting agents and landlords.”
Ian Potter, managing director of ARLA, said: “The private rented sector remains an unregulated industry, and in the event of something going wrong, consumers still only have limited options.
“ARLA has been calling for regulation of the sector for a number of years now, and as more and more people rent, rather than own their home, it is vital that legislation in England is at least in line with its neighbours.
“Of course we welcome the Labour Party’s latest policy review and share their ambition to improve standards in the PRS – the case studies the report outlined are a stark reminder of the unacceptable conditions that are thriving in the absence of regulation – but these reforms need to be proportionate.
“More importantly, what we really need is actual policy, not proposals; and it must be policy that is consistent and able to keep step with legislative developments elsewhere in Britain.
“Renting should be a positive experience and tenants should know that not only is their money safe but so is the property they live in.
“All ARLA members must offer a redress service and client money protection to help protect tenants if something goes wrong.”
As ever, Huddersfield letting agent Martin & Co, are fully behind regulating the private rented sector. Will Taylor, Director of Martin & Co Huddersfield Letting Agents, said "I don't want letting agents to become the second hand car salesman of the proeprty world, we need to act swiftly to stop rogue agents and gain the total trust of the public."