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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Government still committed to introducing ROPA rules

The government has insisted it is still committed to introducing agency qualifications and minimum standards in the sector.

It is almost three years since the Regulation of Property Agents (ROPA) working party recommended a new industry regulator and code of practice, compulsory training and licensing, and significantly beefed up enforcement.

The government has previously expressed its support for the recommendations but the pandemic meant the necessary legislation needed to implement the changes was put on hold.

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The state opening of Parliament and Queen’s Speech on 10 May could provide an opportunity for this.

Baroness Hayter, who helped set up the working group, told Estate Agent Today: “It would be such a wasted opportunity if they don’t move on this, since cleaning up the property agency business could do a lot for landlords, renters, buyers, sellers.”

It comes as The Property Franchise Group chief executive Gareth Samples called for a steer earlier this week on when ROPA  rules will be introduced.

The department for levelling up, housing and communities has now come back with a statement.

A spokesperson says: “The government is committed to raising the professionalism and standards of property agents, protecting consumers while defending the reputation of good agents from the actions of rogue operatives.

“We are considering the recommendations from the working group on the regulation of property agents, and we will continue to work with industry on improving best practice.”

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    • C B
    • 19 April 2022 06:58 AM

    Good. Sooner the better.

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    They will regret it if they do as more stories of tory cronyism is probably the last thing they need right now!

  • Patrick Sullivan

    Ridiculous that it’s took so long. There are still so many agents without the current basic requirements that just do what they want as they want.

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    And ROPA will do nothing to stop this… because there is no change whatsoever to enforcement, and answering a few questions doesn’t make you obey the rules.

     
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    It is surprising how many agents blindly believe what the training companies (PM) tell them, that somehow RoPA is going to solve the issues they face regarding their local completion who don’t play by the rules. Their belief is that by implementing regulation that somehow all those bad agents who don’t currently adhere to the law will miraculously either shut up shop or change their ways.

    Let me tell you categorically that there is absolutely no provision within RoPA that will make any of this happen. It is the same underfunded Trading Standards team who will be tasked with enforcing the law, the same team who fail to enforce the current laws, which if enforced would deal with these offenders, who incidentally make up a tiny minority in our industry.

    No amount of multiple choice questions can make you more professional, letters after your name also don’t make you a professional, your attitude and conduct is what marks you out as a “professional”.

    Oh and what’s more if you think that RoPA is going to help you increase your fees, dream on! Market forces drive fees not badges in the window or meaningless letters after your name. The large corporates will simply absorb the costs of regulation and continue to pursue market share on the back of low fees and high valuations.

    We don’t need more regulation we need enforcement of the current regulations and I for one would be willing to pay more for my ombudsman membership if it would help.

    It’s time the truth came out about RoPA and the con being sold to the industry by those with vested interests and friends in high places.

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    James you are 100% CORRECT

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    With the latest ITV news showing the conditions of Social Housing Properties its the Social Housing providers and Private Landlords that need regulating.

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    How about raising standards and professionalism of MP's?

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