The three government-approved redress schemes; The Property Ombudsman (TPO), Ombudsman Services: Property and The Property Redress Scheme have signed a revised version of their Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).
The MOU ensures that any agent with an outstanding award with one scheme will not be accepted by another until that award is settled.
If an agent is expelled from membership by a scheme due to a breach of its Terms of Business, the MOU will now allow for total transparency and the sharing of information with the press, property portals, The National Trading Standards Estate Agency Team (NTSEAT) as well as the expelled agents’ local Trading Standards office.
Property Ombudsman, Katrine Sporle, says: “Registering with an approved redress scheme is a legal requirement for both sales and letting agents in England. ‘Naming and shaming’ expelled agents that have not fulfilled their obligations and are not able to legally trade is in the public interest. The scheme responsible for expulsion will provide consumer protection by publicising the news via their website and other media outlets, and will inform regulators within the industry.”
Other revisions to the MOU relate to the transfer between schemes. These include:
• To clearly define the actions required if an agent makes an application to one scheme having previously been a member of another, but there are ongoing complaints.
• To identify who is responsible when a company changes redress schemes, but a complaint arises where issues occurred during membership with the previous redress scheme.
Find out more by reading the TPO press release below:
Revised Memorandum of Understanding between redress schemes published