To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what steps he is taking to help ensure that property agents are (a) suitably qualified and (b) accountable to leaseholders.
The Government is committed to promoting fairness and transparency for tenants and homeowners and making sure that consumers are protected from abuse and poor service. This commitment includes raising professionalism and standards amongst property agents (letting, estate and managing agents), protecting consumers while defending the reputation of good agents from the actions of rogue operatives. We therefore welcome the ongoing work being undertaken by the industry itself to raise professionalism and standards across the sector, including on codes of practice for property agents.
The Government is considering the recommendations in the final report on the regulation of property agents from Lord Best’s working group, including on qualifications. We will continue to work with industry on improving best practice.
Leaseholders have a range of powers to hold a property agent to account. They may complain directly to the agent, and then to the relevant Government-approved redress scheme to which a property agent must belong. They may also apply for an Order to the First-tier Tribunal under Section 24 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 to change their managing agent if they are unhappy with the service that they are receiving.