Latest News from The Property Ombudsman Board:

TPO reports a 14% increase in lettings membership

Published on Monday, 27 June 2016.

Thousands of new agents sign up to TPO’s Lettings Code of Practice following mandatory redress legislation

The Property Ombudsman scheme (TPO) has reported a 14% increase in lettings membership since the government made it a legal requirement for all lettings agents and property managers in England to belong to a Government approved redress scheme.

April 2016 Newsletter

Published on Monday, 20 June 2016.

April 2016 Newsletter

This edition throws the spotlight on several compliance issues and the legal
requirements for agents to display their redress membership, lettings fees, and
disclose whether they have CMP.

We've also included an 'Open Letter' from the CMA which featured in the news last week in case anyone missed it – a must-read for members. Please read, share and brief your colleagues accordingly.

Two letting agents in Southampton expelled from The Property Ombudsman scheme and from registration for lettings redress

Published on Wednesday, 04 May 2016.

Consumers are being warned by the UK’s largest property redress scheme about the actions of two lettings agents based in Southampton. Both agencies, trading as ‘The Flat Agency & Michael Browns Ltd’ and ‘Property Vibe Ltd’, were expelled from lettings redress membership of The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme for a minimum period of three years.

Competition and Markets Authority letter to the Property Industry on Competition Law

Published on Wednesday, 03 June 2015.

Competition and Markets Authority letter to the Property Industry on Competition Law

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) have asked that we assist in giving their letter the widest possible distribution and to that end we have co-ordinated our release with the CMA and distribution by the National Association of Estate Agents and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (it does mean that some of you will receive the same notification from other sources).

I also confirm that it is the intention of TPO to revise aspects of the TPO Codes of Practice to explain the importance of adhering to the CMA’s direction in relation to Competition Law and we will be producing some future supplementary guidance as relevant.

Please click here to view the letter from the CMA.

 

 

 

The Property Ombudsman Conference - 'Raise Your Standards'

Published on Tuesday, 02 June 2015.

The Property Ombudsman Conference - 'Raise Your Standards'

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme is delighted to officially announce its upcoming conference called “Raise Your Standards” which will take place on 14th October at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull.

Gerry Fitzjohn, Vice Chairman of TPO Ltd said: “TPO Conference 2015 has been in planning for some months, and we can now inform member and non-member estate and letting agents about the event and its benefits. The aim behind its launch has been simple; to help raise standards and improve customer service within the property industry. TPO work in a field that is continuously developing with new legislation and regulation being introduced all the time, therefore education is key. This conference will provide attendees with 4 hours of CPD (Continuous Professional Development) through well-known industry guest speakers all offering their professional expertise on a range of relevant and interesting topics as well as practical workshops, including one run by the Ombudsman, Christopher Hamer which will put individuals in the place of a TPO case officer.

The Consumer Rights Act 2015

Published on Friday, 22 May 2015.

The Consumer Rights Act 2015

From 27 May 2015 new provisions in the Consumer Rights Act 2015 come into force which will impact on all English and Welsh letting and management agents.

Section 83 of the Act relates to the provision of fees, charges and/or penalties and is intended to create full transparency to enable consumers (both landlords and tenants) to ascertain exactly how much they will be required to pay before they enter into any form of contract or agreement.

Section 83 of the Act can be found here.

May 2015 Newsletter

Published on Tuesday, 12 May 2015.

May 2015 Newsletter

TPO Annual Report 2014, TPO Scotland, VAT advertising advice for property professionals and introduction to compliance surveys

This edition covers the release of our much anticipated annual report and the launch of two new versions of the Codes of Practice for sales and letting agents operating in Scotland. This edition also includes important guidance from the Committee of Adveritising Practice and an introduction to compliance surveys.

Gerry Fitzjohn, Vice Chairman, TPO Board.

 

December 2014 Newsletter

Published on Friday, 05 December 2014.

December 2014 Newsletter

TSI approval, new Zoopla tool for members & Home Office announcement 

This edition is a great opportunity for us to celebrate some exciting news for our members with TSI approving a second Code of Practice, which enables every TPO letting agent to use their new TSI 'approved trader' status  to assure consumers that they operate the highest service standards. We've also got some fantastic news for all TPO members following the launch of a new tool on Zoopla. This edition also includes an important announcement from the Home Office and some best practice on final viewpoint letters.

Gerry Fitzjohn, Vice Chairman, TPO Board.

This month we look at:
New TSI approval TPO's Lettings Code
Have you Signed up?
New Zoopla tools for TPO members
Home office announcement

Lettings Redress: TPO Update

Published on Friday, 01 August 2014.

Lettings Redress: TPO Update

I wanted to personally write to you with an update concerning new legislative changes for letting agents and property management agents in England. Contrary to press articles published today, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has said that no statement has been issued to confirm the enforcement date of new legislation that will make it a legal requirement for letting agents to register with an approved redress scheme. We understand a DCLG announcement is imminent, following which we will ensure copies are shared via email, Twitter and our website. The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme was approved by The Department for Communities and Local Government earlier this year and is the largest scheme of its kind, with more than 11,500 lettings agents already registering with TPO voluntarily and following the scheme's unique Code of Practice, which represents best practice in the industry and has been proven to raise standards.

Trading Standards Institute: Are You Compliant?

Published on Tuesday, 01 July 2014.

Trading Standards Institute: Are You Compliant?

Important message sent on behalf of the Trading Standards Institute. Last year, we partnered with Yoshki to launch the TSI CCAS logo to be used on websites. The logo allows consumers to verify your membership to the CCAS by simply clicking on the logo. If you haven't done so already, you can add the logo to your website by following the instructions attached. If you need any help or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Yoshki support desk, as detailed in the attached guidelines.

New Codes for TPO Member Agents

Published on Tuesday, 01 July 2014.

New Codes for TPO Member Agents

TPO has made several important changes to both the Code of Practice for Residential Letting Agents and Residential Estate Agents. The updated Codes will be effective from 1 August 2014 to reflect the latest industry best practice and legislative changes.

TPO’s Codes of Practice are unique in the industry and provide a set of standards and guidelines for members to follow that comply with all primary and secondary legislation.

The Codes are a tool for member agents to use as a ‘mark of excellence’ above their non-member industry peers to reassure buyers, sellers, tenants and landlords about the service they can expect to receive. 

June 2014 Newsletter

Published on Monday, 02 June 2014.

June 2014 Newsletter

Welcome to the June 2014 TPO Newsletter

This edition has a special focus on regulation to reflect the new Consumer Contracts Regulations 2013 (CCRs) that come into force this month. New regulations such as these and many other primary and secondary legislation changes are reflected in TPO's new Codes of Practice for Sales and Lettings, which have been updated to include the latest industry best practice.

Gerry Fitzjohn, Vice Chairman, TPO Board.


This month we look at:
Bite-size best practice: Adhering to the new Consumer Contracts Regulations
New Codes for Sales and Lettings come into force from August 2014,
TPO receives Government approval to provide lettings redress.

April 2014 Newsletter

Published on Tuesday, 01 April 2014.

April 2014 Newsletter

This edition highlights some important compliance matters to take note of and includes a special invite for TPO members to join the Ombudsman at a series of industry events taking place across the UK. Please also make sure you update your records with TPO's new dedicated telephone number for all Membership enquiries - the number was launched today and is 01722 335458.

Gerry Fitzjohn, Vice Chairman, TPO Board.

 

January 2014 Newsletter

Published on Wednesday, 01 January 2014.

January 2014 Newsletter

This month we introduce our very first edition of our new-look monthly e-newsletter for TPO members, which includes the latest industry news and TPO scheme updates.

This edition features important information relating to a new audit being carried out on TPO agents by the Trading Standards Institute - a must read for all sales agents.

Gerry Fitzjohn, Vice Chairman, TPO Board.

TPO Announces New Code of Practice

Published on Friday, 01 November 2013.

I’m pleased to confirm that with effect from 1st January 2014, The Property Ombudsman (TPO) is launching a new Code of Practice for Buying Agents.

We’ve listened to member feedback and recognised that buying agents are a growing market sector in its own right which required its own Code of Practice.

The new Code will be a first for the industry and reflects our ongoing commitment to recognise new and emerging market sectors. 

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the TPO members who shared their insight and provided feedback during the drafting of this Code - their input was essential and deeply valued by the TPO Council.

I have provided some further information below in the form of a Q&A to assist with any questions you may have ahead of the new Code’s implementation.

Best regards

Gerry Fitzjohn, Vice Chairman, The Property Ombudsman 

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