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By Philip Farrell

Co-Founder and CCO, Offr


Now automation can help protect the property market

Over the last five years, the Government has introduced a range of measures to regulate the property market, particularly in the PRS sector.

Potential further legislation is on the horizon which centres on the positive renting experience, including a range of new measures such as blanket bans on renting to families with children, or those who are in receipt of benefits to be made illegal and amendments to the Tenants Fees Act required to allow permitted payments relating to insurance.

There is also plan to introduce a Renters' Reform Bill in the 2022-23 parliamentary session to “ensure landlords do not unreasonably withhold consent when a tenant requests to have a pet in their home.


The Government’s relentless pressure on the property market is forcing agents to spend increasing amounts of time and money to ensure they are fully compliant. Fortunately, there has been a surge of proptech companies that have emerged during the last two years, driven by the need for technological advancement during the pandemic.

Verification Checks

We have seen proptech companies emerging as real game-changers, especially in the area of automated verification checks. Money laundering has been a hot topic of late in the UK, which is facing pressure to not just make tighter rules to track down the origins of money that’s spent on large assets in the country like prime real estate.

The capital has been dubbed by some as the “London laundromat” — but also, in light of sanctions on Russia in recent weeks, actually to enforce those rules.

New Register of Overseas Entities

This was launched on 1 August and requires a UK-regulated agent such as estate and letting agents, to complete verification checks on the information that the ‘overseas entity’ intends to provide to Companies House. Other agents include accountants, tax advisers, insolvency practitioners, legal professionals, etc.

Overseas entities who already own land in the UK will be given six months to register their beneficial owners, or managing officers. This six month period will not begin until the new register has been launched. Any new purchasers will need to register with Companies House from the day the Register comes into effect.


Thirdfort, a proptech which has built a platform to help professional services firms run more thorough due diligence, and to flag when something is suspicious, recently announced a $20 million investment to help with the development of ID verification and detection of money laundering and payment fraud.

With HMRC’s regulations of agents in relations to anti-money laundering increasing, using Thirdfort means agents can negotiate in confidence, secure in the knowledge, they are fully.

Offr has integrated Thirdfort into its platform to manage the automated identity checks and help us deliver a better service to vendors and buyers, by speeding up property transactions. All offers submitted must be fully qualified (with information on funding details, buyer position, proof of funds, AML checks and ID verification), before the submit button is hit.

Fast Verification Speeds Up Property Transactions

Delivering the world's fastest and most trusted way of transacting property sales, Offr is a risk-free process for agents, taking
lots of leg work out of what can be a tense and time-consuming process.

The white-label platform for agents allows buyers to securely submit qualified offers at the click of a button, anytime, anywhere and close deals on real estate agents’ own websites. Offr’s technology enables estate agents to handle and manage more instructions by streamlining the offer submissions and management process.

Agents are kept up to date in real-time, track the progress of a sale or lease on their mobile device or laptop, in real-time, with instant alerts when an offer is received, if there is an upcoming viewing, or if legal documents have been updated.

Up until now, property transactions have largely been restricted and confined domestically, with no easy, fast, and secure way of buying properties cross-border available. We are helping agents deliver a better service to vendors and buyers by speeding up property transactions through digitising over 85% of the process.

*Philip Farrell is Co-founder & Chief Commercial Officer at Offr


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