HMRC and the National Trading Standards Estate Agency Team have agreed new procedures to “enhance and ease the current flow of information on estate agency businesses between both parties.”
In a short, vaguely-worded statement on the government’s website, HMRC says it has agreed new procedures with NTSEAT for “using legal gateways” to check on agencies conforming with money laundering legislation.
“Estate agency businesses must register under money laundering regulations and for property redress schemes. Most operate within the legislation to protect the financial system and consumers” says the statement - implicitly suggesting that some agencies operate outside the legislation.
“This agreement, effective from January 2017, will streamline our co-operation and information exchange, whilst making it more difficult for non-compliant estate agency businesses to operate outside the Money Laundering Regulations 2007 and Estate Agency Act 1979” the statement continues.
“The agreement will enable both parties to target areas of risk, those who are trading without registering appropriately and those who may not be meeting their obligations” it concludes.