Latest News

MPs recognise our call for more enforcement

19 April 2018

On 19 April 2018, the influential Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee, made up of MPs in Westminster, released its second report following the evidence sessions as part of its inquiry into the Private Rented Sector and Draft Tenant Fees Bill. Read More...

Propertymark urges Government to streamline redress with ombudsman portal

13 April 2018

ARLA Propertymark and NAEA Propertymark have submitted a joint response to the Government’s consultation on Strengthening consumer redress in the housing market by calling for an ombudsman portal for housing related complaints with one ombudsman for private housing and another for social housing. Read More...

Letting agents - why change now?

12 April 2018

Established companies and industries are increasingly putting technology at the core of their business, and letting agencies should be no exception. Read More...

Banks in Scotland told to offer dedicated client banking

Thursday 12 April 2018

The Scottish Code of Practice, which was introduced on 1 April 2018 made it mandatory that all lettings agents have a separate and dedicated client account.

However, as many agents are finding, some banks are still not offering these types of accounts, which is making it difficult for agents to meet the legal requirements.

We have been applying pressure for Government to take action, and we're pleased that on 5 April Murdo Fraser, Conservative MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, asked the Scottish Government in Written Statements, what they were doing to resolve this considerable anomaly. On the one hand agents are required by law to place client money in dedicated accounts, and on the other hand, banks have to manage risk, and are reluctant to offer these types of accounts to companies that are in an unregulated industry.

When asked this question, Kevin Stewart replied: "The Scottish Government has engaged directly, or through British Bankers Association/UK Finance, with the following banks regarding (a) undesignated client bank accounts, (b) money laundering regulations and (c) the Letting Agent Code of Practice: Bank of Scotland, Barclays, Clydesdale Bank, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander."

Whilst we welcome the fact the Scottish Government is taking action, it's worth noting that we campaigned rigorously for letting agents to be included in the fourth money laundering directive, which sets out which industries are covered by the anti-money laundering laws would have resolved this anomaly and made it easier to reconcile the two opposing laws. 

Keep your eye out for further updates as and when we know more.