News & Blog

Islington Council Prepare to Issue Penalties to Non-Compliant Agents


Islington Council is the latest London authority to carry out investigations into whether known agents in their area have become a member of a government approved redress scheme.


As of 1st October 2014, it became a legal requirement for all letting and property management agents in England, as defined by legislation, to join one of three consumer redress schemes authorised by the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG).


However, an investigation carried out by London Live TV found that London councils were doing very little to enforce the new regulation, with some boroughs being unaware that the compliance deadline had even passed.


It transpired that Newham Council were the only London authority to have been proactive in their approach to implementing the legislation in their borough; having so far issued £5000 fines to 10 Agents that have refused to register with a scheme.


Newham Council’s mayoral advisor for housing, Andrew Baikie, said: “We are using all the powers at our disposal to drive up standards for tenants in the private rented sector to ensure that our residents have access to good quality homes.


“Those agents who have failed to sign up to a redress scheme are not operating within the law and we are taking action to protect our residents.”


In the wake of the London Live broadcast, it appears that other London councils have begun to follow Newham’s lead.


The Property Redress Scheme have recently received communication from the London Borough of Islington who wished to make enquires about 10 Agents in their area that they suspect of non-compliance. Upon confirmation that these Agents are not members of any redress scheme, they plan to issue fixed penalty notices this week.


The London Borough of Hackney have also asked for a list of all Agents in their authority that have joined the PRS. 


The Property Redress Scheme has so far seen over 2300 agents successfully join up, with around 500 of these being based in London.  


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Property Redress Scheme is approved by Government under the Alternative Dispute Resolution for Consumer Disputes (Competent Authorities and Information) Regulations 2015