Licensing scheme for estate agents to be launched
A new licensing scheme for estate agents is to be launched. aimed at protecting consumers from unqualified estate agents.
According to the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA), most estate agents are reputable but anyone can start up as an estate agent in the UK without qualifications or formal checks.
The new scheme was described by Housing Minister, Grant Shapps, as a “symbolic moment“, while the NAEA said it hopes the scheme will representt honesty for agents.
The Association, which represents around 10,000 people in the property industry, said it was aware of the poor reputation of estate agents.
However, the launch of the new scheme means an estate agent will need to have the necessary level of professional indemnity insurance, be bound by the NAEA agents’ rules of conduct and commit to undertaking 12 hours of training on the latest developments every year.
Those who are found to be breaking the rules could end up at a tribunal, or thrown out of the scheme.
Peter Bolton King, chief executive of the NAEA, comments: “From today estate agency in the UK is a two-tiered industry – those agents who are licensed and those who are not. I think the public will welcome the distinction and I believe that this move will raise standards across the industry.”