When it comes to letting a property, it is important that landlords and renters have faith in their agent.
To many renters, transparency means fairness. The more open and honest an agent is, the less likely they are to waste the time of clients.
But while most agents do a good job for their clients, ensuring that property transactions go as smoothly as possible, there remains a lack of trustworthiness in agents as far as some people are concerned, caused partly by poor practices by some agents and a handful of unscrupulous firms, which are giving the industry a bad reputation.
However, despite the reckless behaviour of some rogue operators, the battle for high standards in the industry continues.
Among those trying to make the private rented sector a better, safer place for all in recent years is The National Approved Letting Scheme (NALS), which has just rebranded as safeagent.
NALS, a not-for-profit accreditation scheme for agents, has helped coordinate the safeagent campaign since 2011, focussed on achieving mandatory Client Money Protection (CMP) for all lettings and management agents.
The safeagent name has proved popular with agents, as a readily recognisable mark for consumers to look for.
The newly rebranded safeagent will continue to operate in the private rented sector, acting as an accreditation scheme for letting and management agents.
The majority of NALS Firms are already safeagents, and the only difference is the use of one logo.
safeagent Awareness Week, which has been running for the past six years, will be from 17-21 June 2019.
Isobel Thomson, chief executive of safeagent, said: “It's a pivotal time for the private rented sector. There have been many changes, and many more are in the offing, but we do know what makes a safeagent. In a crowded, sometimes confusing marketplace, safeagent remains an easily identifiable mark of trust for consumers in an agent's professionalism and the security of their money.
“This is an exciting time for safeagent, a fresh look, with exciting plans for the coming months. We will maintain safeagent's consumer focus, while also continuing to champion the cause of our professional accredited agents who uphold the highest standards of professionalism.”