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Material information rules have ‘passed agents by’ - claim

Some agents still appear unaware about their material information responsibilities, conveyancers claim.

The National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team (NTSELAT) published its long-awaited Parts B and C of material information rules in November 2023.

This includes information that should be covered for all property listings – such as the type of property, the building materials used, the number of rooms and information about utilities and parking. 


Part C is information that only needs to be established if the property is affected by the issue – such as flood risk or restrictive covenants. 

But Rob Hailstone, chief executive of Bold Legal Group said the conveyancing network’s members have reported that some agents are still unaware of the rules.

One member said: “We have approached the three agents who recommend us on a regular basis, however, the guidance seems to have passed most agents by.
“One had heard of it but expected me to sort it, while the other two hadn’t heard of it.”

The unnamed conveyancer said if they were asked to help answer the relevant questions, they would be obtaining a full search pack but then of course the question would be who pays for it and can those searches be relied upon.

The message added: “We would then do a mini title check and get the fee earner to answer the questions needed for the sales particulars and yes we would need the seller to complete the Ta6/BAPSI.

“The guidance is for estate agents, but they appear detached and are probably more worried about the market and low pipelines so don’t know where the energy to move this forward will come from?”

Hailstone said he called into a local estate agent and quizzed them on the material information guidance. 

He said: “The first reaction was, ‘I know nothing about it’, they then realised that they had a two-page missive in their in tray from their bosses gathering dust. I didn’t get to see it but, two pages can hardly be long enough to explain fully what is now being required of them.

“I think the BLG member summed things up nicely, ‘I don’t know where the energy to move this forward will come from?’

“I always felt that adoption of the new guidance would be a slow burn, but I’m not even sure the fuse has been lit yet. Do agents require the help of conveyancer, ones they know and trust, with regard to complying with the material information guidance, or am I and conveyancers, offering assistance where it isn’t wanted or needed?”

  • charlotte Jeffrey- campbell

    We have found similar. Agents need to get training in these areas so that good habits are formed. Most are willing but training needs to be accessible and relevant. Our new course has been popular.

  • Shaun Adams

    Imagine if Rightmove couldn't show non-compliant properties that are breaking the law? Would we be the only agent on Rightmove?


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