MT Properties Central Limited Expelled from The Property Ombudsman for 2 years

Published on Friday, 10 July 2015. Posted in Press Releases

MT Properties Central Limited Expelled from The Property Ombudsman for 2 years

MT Properties Central Limited (MTPC), a sales and letting agent which operates in Birmingham, has been expelled from membership of The Property Ombudsman (TPO) for a minimum of two years after failing to comply with parts of the TPO Code of Practice for Residential Letting Agents. MTPC also failed to co-operate with the Ombudsman’s investigation and to date has not paid the award made of £2,300.

The decision to expel MTPC from TPO membership arose following a complaint from landlords relating to a number of aspects of the agent’s service in connection with tenancies at two properties.  The Ombudsman found evidence of poor record keeping and administration, and upheld complaints about the collection and payment of rent to landlords, as well as poor service.

TPO announces its first ever conference “Raise Your Standards”

Published on Thursday, 04 June 2015. Posted in Press Releases

TPO announces its first ever 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.”

TPO undergoes staff exchange in new initiative to deliver best practice

Published on Wednesday, 03 June 2015. Posted in Press Releases

TPO undergoes staff exchange in new initiative to deliver best practice

Two members of staff, one from The Property Ombudsman the other from Northwood UK, switched roles for a week in order to gain greater experience and knowledge of each other’s positions within the industry.  

The exchange was instigated by Property Ombudsman Christopher Hamer as part of TPO’s ongoing application to raise standards within the industry.  Hamer commented “It is important to emphasise the need for agents to deal promptly and professionally with complaints and equally it is hugely beneficial for my office to be aware of the practical issues agents face when trying to resolve matters themselves. This exchange will, I hope, help bring about a good understanding of the challenges agents might come up against before unresolved disputes are referred to me. It will also help educate on the meticulous process which occurs in my office prior to determining resolution of a dispute.”

Christopher Hamer stands down as the Property Ombudsman

Published on Wednesday, 06 May 2015. Posted in Press Releases

Christopher Hamer stands down as the Property Ombudsman

After nine successful years as the Property Ombudsman, Christopher Hamer’s term of office is coming to an end. On 30 November 2015 he will be officially standing down.

The independent TPO Council together with the TPO Board Chairman, Bill McClintock, have began the search to fill the position. Christopher will however remain as Ombudsman for the next few months where he will continue to generally represent the scheme. He will be handing over to his successor on 30 November.

TPO Scotland established with Codes of Practice for the Scottish sales and lettings market

Published on Wednesday, 29 April 2015. Posted in Press Releases

TPO Scotland established with Codes of Practice for the Scottish sales and lettings market

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme recently launched two new versions of its Code of Practice for sales and lettings agents operating in Scotland, and to officially mark the launch of TPO Scotland, invited individuals from leading industry associations, agents and local journalists to join the Scottish Board and the Ombudsman, Christopher Hamer, for a celebration.  

The event took place at the Offices of Braemore Lettings in Edinburgh and proved to be a great success with guests enjoying a buffet lunch and a glass of wine.

TPO's Annual Report for 2014 reveals growing membership and record number of referrals

Published on Friday, 17 April 2015. Posted in Press Releases

TPO's Annual Report for 2014 reveals growing membership and record number of referrals

The latest report released by The Property Ombudsman reveals a continuing upward trend in new referrals, 42% against the previous year.  This is indicative of both the general trend in the consumer world to challenge when something does not give satisfaction, as well as the growing number of agents (28% more than at the start of 2014) now signed up as members of TPO.

Six months on from the introduction of new legislation, making it a legal requirement for lettings agents and property managers in England to join a government approved redress scheme, the report indicates the number of letting offices now signed up to TPO scheme has reached a record level of 12,915.  This brings the total number of sales and lettings offices offering TPO's free, independent route to resolve disputes to 26,735.

Minister urges letting agents to sign up to TPO's Lettings Code of Practice

Published on Thursday, 26 February 2015. Posted in Press Releases

Minister urges letting agents to sign up to TPO's Lettings Code of Practice

Jo Swinson, Consumer Affairs Minister has spoken out in support of a new Trading Standards Institute (TSI) campaign to raise awareness of their Consumer Codes Approval Scheme (CCAS), which replaced the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) scheme in 2013.

The initial focus of the media campaign will be to remind tenants and landlords of their legal right to free and independent dispute resolution through TPO, the only redress scheme to operate CCAS-approved Codes.

TPO launches two Codes of Practice for Scottish Sales and Letting Agents

Published on Tuesday, 24 February 2015. Posted in Press Releases

TPO launches two Codes of Practice for Scottish Sales and Letting Agents

The TPO scheme has launched two new versions of its Codes of Practice for Sales and Lettings Agents operating in Scotland.

The Codes are unique to TPO and have been raising standards in the property industry for 25 years as part of the scheme’s free, fair and impartial dispute resolution service, which helps more than 16,000[1] buyers, sellers, landlord and tenants with their disputes.

Thousands of tenants and landlords report disputes to TPO following new government legislation for lettings agents

Published on Monday, 23 February 2015. Posted in Press Releases

Thousands of tenants and landlords report disputes to TPO following new government legislation for lettings agents

Sixty-nine per cent of consumer complaints were supported by the TPO scheme, which recently gained approval from the TSI CCAS for its Lettings Code of Practice.

TPO, the UK’s largest government-approved redress scheme, has published its latest market statistics to highlight the number of landlords and tenants who have used its free, fair and independent service following new government legislation for letting agents.

PRS 360 Degrees Report

Published on Thursday, 05 February 2015. Posted in Press Releases

PRS 360 Degrees Report

TPO can confirm the publication of a new report, written by Kate Faulkner, with the backing of The Property Ombudsman (TPO) and the industry, which can be found here.

Christopher Hamer, the Ombudsman, provided his expert opinion and guidance on some of the topics covered in the report, having seen thousands of issues that many landlords and tenants experience when a dispute arises in the private rental sector.

TPO Receives Record Number of Complaints from Tenants & Landlords

Published on Wednesday, 01 October 2014. Posted in Press Releases

TPO Receives Record Number of Complaints from Tenants & Landlords

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme has reported a sharp increase in the number of consumer complaints for the residential lettings sector, ahead of the requirement for all letting agents in England that comes into force this week (1st October 2014) for every letting agent to register with an approved redress scheme.

The figures, published in The Property Ombudsman's 2014 Interim Report reveal that 1,187 complaints were resolved in total about both sales and lettings issues between 1 January and 30 June 2014, with 721 complaints (61%) made against letting agents – a 37% increase on the same period last year.

The Ombudsman upheld 74% of the complaints made by landlords and tenants against letting agents.

TPO Supports New Cross-Industry Code for the Private Rental Sector

Published on Thursday, 11 September 2014. Posted in Press Releases

TPO Supports New Cross-Industry Code for the Private Rental Sector

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme has expressed its support for a new 'best practice' Code for the Private Rented Sector (PRS) which was officially launched today by the Minister for Housing, Brandon Lewis.

The new PRS Code, which comes immediately into effect, was developed at the request of the Department for Communities and Local Government's (DCLG) in 2013. Facilitated by RICS, the drafting of the Code brought together TPO and sixteen other leading property organisations to collectively outline mandatory and recommended best practices for landlords and lettings agents in order to improve the stock of privately rented homes in the UK.

TPO Backs Client Money Protection and Calls for More Landlords to Seek the Greatest Protection Rather than the Cheapest Fee When Choosing a Letting Agent

Published on Thursday, 07 August 2014. Posted in Press Releases

TPO Backs Client Money Protection and Calls for More Landlords to Seek the Greatest Protection Rather than the Cheapest Fee When Choosing a Letting Agent

Fresh calls for letting agents to offer Client Money Protection have been backed by the Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme in the wake of several high-profile cases where landlords have lost thousands of pounds in rental income by dealing with an agent that did not have sufficient cover to protect consumers from rental fraud.

The Codes, which will be effective from 1st August 2014 and reflect the developments in industry practice and legislative changes affecting both consumers and agents.

TPO Launches New Property Codes of Practice for Sales and Lettings Agents - Codes Will Come into Force from 1st August 2014

Published on Tuesday, 15 July 2014. Posted in Press Releases

The Property Ombudsman (TPO) scheme will be issuing revised Codes of Practice for sales and lettings agents from next month to further improve standards in the industry and ensure consumers are treated fairly.

The Codes, which will be effective from 1st August 2014 and reflect the developments in industry practice and legislative changes affecting both consumers and agents.

LBW Lettings Is Expelled from the Property Ombudsman Scheme, following 'Serious' and 'Flagrant' Code Breaches & Its Failure to Pay Landlord Award

Published on Thursday, 29 May 2014. Posted in Press Releases

LBW Lettings Is Expelled from the Property Ombudsman Scheme, following 'Serious' and 'Flagrant' Code Breaches & Its Failure to Pay Landlord Award

The Property Ombudsman has expelled a Hampshire letting agent from its redress scheme following a landlord complaint.

Whytehead Property Management, which trades as LBW Lettings in Fleet, refused to pay an award made by Christopher Hamer, the Ombudsman, after he upheld a complaint concerning several issues, including the management of repairs to the landlord’s property and failing to reference a tenant.

The Property Ombudsman's Annual Report Reveals Record Levels of Complaints and Enquiries

Published on Thursday, 15 May 2014. Posted in Press Releases

New report reveals 23% increase in enquiries with lettings disputes representing 60% of consumer complaints.

The latest Annual Report from The Property Ombudsman, Christopher Hamer, reveals a substantial increase in the number of consumer enquiries and complaints against sales and lettings agents, with 16,000 enquiries received in 2013, a 23% increase on the previous year.

The Property Ombudsman launches Code of Practice for the newly-formed National Association of Property Buyers

Published on Wednesday, 14 May 2014. Posted in Press Releases

The Property Ombudsman launches Code of Practice for the newly-formed National Association of Property Buyers

New national trade association created to raise standards in the 'Quick House Sale Sector' following OFT Market Study.

Some of the UK's largest and best-known property buying companies have collaborated with the Property Ombudsman (TPO) to create a new Code of Practice1 to address the issues raised in the Office of Fair Trading's (OFT) market study into the 'Quick House Sale' sector2.

The Property Ombudsman Receives Government Approval to Provide Lettings Redress

Published on Tuesday, 15 April 2014. Posted in Press Releases

New legislative changes will make it a legal requirement for all letting agents to register with a redress scheme.

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has approved The Property Ombudsman (TPO) to provide a free and independent redress service to landlords and tenants as part of new legislative changes affecting letting agents.

The Property Ombudsman Supports Landlord Complaint and Expels Arvin Estates Ltd

Published on Monday, 14 April 2014. Posted in Press Releases

The Property Ombudsman Supports Landlord Complaint and Expels Arvin Estates Ltd

Arvin Estates Ltd (AE) has been expelled by The Property Ombudsman following its failure to pay an award made by the Ombudsman following a complaint that he had independently reviewed and upheld for a landlord.

The agent, which is understood to have now ceased trading, provided sales and lettings services and operated one branch located at 136 The Crossways, Hounslow, TW5 0JR.