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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Many More Details expected when landlords advertise properties

Landlords will have to include many more specific points about their properties when they list them in future - whether directly or via letting agents.

An initiative from the National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agent Team is attempting to give consumers the maximum information about properties before viewings and making rental or purchase offers. 

The measures will complement existing Consumer Protection Regulation from Unfair Trading Regulations introduced back in 2008.

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This new list includes property basics such as number of bedrooms and location but also details of a property’s utilities or lack of them, parking, accessibility facilities, flood risk and many other features currently missing from most ads for rented homes.

So-called Part A of this ‘material information’ was released by Trading Standards last year, and requires landlords and letting agents to include council tax band or rate, property price or rent and tenure information.

Now Parts B and C have been introduced. 

Part B is information that should be covered for all properties – 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. 

A statement from NTSELAT says: “Buyers or renters will see new data fields appearing on portals and any left empty will be flagged and will have a link explaining what’s missing. This will help consumers understand the benefits of being fully informed before embarking on moving home.”

James Munro of the National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team adds: “For years, property agents have grappled with what information they should be providing and how, and when it should be disclosed. Their call for help was clear. And too many consumers suffer emotionally and financially because important information crops up late in the process and the transaction falls through. 

“That’s why I’m delighted to publish this guidance today, as the culmination of nearly three years’ work in collaboration with our partners to define and clarify what constitutes material information and to ensure that agents can access that information promptly and with the support they need.

“This industry-wide effort will create consistency and raise standards across the board, and I would like to thank all those who were involved, in particular the property portals, industry leaders and agents themselves who have made such an important contribution.

“With all sections of the industry ready to support agents I am confident the process of change will be smooth and that the benefits – faster transactions, fewer complaints and fall-throughs and ultimately, greater consumer trust – will be quickly felt.”

List of material information for Parts B and C

(NB: The examples given are not an exhaustive list)

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Part B – information that should be established for all properties: 

  1. Physical characteristics of the property:
    • Property type – e.g. house, flat, room to let, park home etc.
    • Property construction – key materials used in the main structure and other areas 
  2. Number and types of room – including room measurements
  3. Utilities – how they are supplied:
    • Electricity supply
    • Water supply
    • Sewerage
    • Heating 
    • Broadband – including type and an indication of speed
    • Mobile signal/coverage – including any known issues or restrictions
  4. Parking

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Part C – information that may or may not need to be established depending on whether the property is affected by the issue: 

  • Building safety – e,g, unsafe cladding, asbestos, risk of collapse
  • Restrictions – e.g. conservation area, listed building status, tree preservation order
  • Rights and easements – e.g. public rights of way, shared drives
  • Flood risk
  • Coastal erosion risk
  • Planning permission – for the property itself and its immediate locality
  • Accessibility/adaptations – e.g. step free access, wet room, essential living accommodation on entrance level
  • Coalfield or mining area

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

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    Most of it is fairly sensible and largely information some of us already provide.
    Room sizes is certainly a useful one as long as a standard method of measuring is specified. Length of walls or square meters of floor area? How are sloping ceilings treated? Does floor area count if ceiling is less than 1.5m high?

    I'm not sure a landlord would know much about broadband speed or mobile coverage but both of these things should be available on the providers websites.

    When buying it would certainly be useful to know about coastal erosion or mining at a very early stage. Some information may unduly scare novice buyers. A great many houses are deemed to be in flood zones but haven't flooded in decades. Numerous flood defense schemes have been built but the houses are still labelled as being at risk of flooding. Asbestos is present in millions of houses and as long as it is undisturbed or professionally removed isn't a huge problem.
    Knowing if permitted development rights have been removed would be useful or if there are estate management charges or district heating schemes.

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    Given there will be hardly anything to rent 🆘🆘 it’s a moot point, my current stock will never see a new tenant…. Only an owner occupier 🏡🏡💰💰

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    Hi- VT one can get quite a few of these answers from sites. And do a drive by a couple of times different times for parking. And they only have to ask as well. Also - When they come to view bring or L Lord can have a tape measure with him.

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    More disgusting rubbish determined to make many more homeless and Mr James Munro is delighted why don’t he get a jet a job with Shelter. I wonder would he have any connection to my ex landlord in Liverpool who fed us with cat food as stew, one of the lads found the cupboard full of it but he had no cat, then again I suppose not probably a mats undergraduate.Anyway more unnecessary nonsense to choke us off with free administration.
    The information is already available to the public for more part, they are not Children and over 18. So much misinformation from the Department so many properties listed in areas that couldn’t possibly flood I have houses on top of hills included on their maps adversely wrongly affecting the Insurance but they don’t listen. Council tax they all have smart phones. Broadband speed know nothing about it ask their University that’s feeling all this crap. I thought it was all about housing people we are not Teachers. Room sizes can they not see what size it is or is it for every nosey parker on line looking as a pass
    time it’s private property. Anyway if it’s a licensable property all the room sizes are on the Application to determine who can occupy them.
    Shelter is at it again saying 12’000 more to be evicted before Christmas, just heard it now on LBC fake News Channel now, never gave the reason why. Which is THE RENTERS REFORM BILL even if were true. They are so determined to make people homeless and won’t stop until they do.
    How does anyone in there right mind think scrapping Section 21 is going to solve the housing crisis ?. So much evidence to the contrary even the threat has dislodged millions, filled B&B’s and Hotels making huge numbers homeless costing taxpayers £1.7b. Polly give back your CBE Honours if you have any shame and stop making people homeless.

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    Miiiaaww! 🐱

     
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    More unnecessary nonsense from these over paid underworked interfering busybodies.

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    Some of the answers to those questions are what a buyer would need to know, not somebody renting a flat on a temporary basis.

    Clearly, this is all part of the same process to see renting become akin to buying a property.

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    Surely there is a significant difference between renting a property and buying it, in terms of the information needed? I already provide a lot of info including room sizes, but often prospective tenants don't bother to read it, judging by the questions they ask. They just look at the heading and the photos. Surely internet speed depends on which provider and package you choose?
    I notice the NRLA says you should give out the EPC and your GDPR policy notice at all viewings, never had a tenant interested in either of those. They want to know: when can they move in, is it a long let, how much is the deposit and rent, can they have pets, can they redecorate, can they make holes in the walls (put pictures up). They have never asked about the construction of the building. What they should perhaps ask to see is the tenancy agreement, to see whether or not they can comply with it!

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    The tenants could come back to us if their internet speed isn't what its supposd to be? Time to exit the market even earlier!

     
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    Very few people actually read the advert in my experience.

    Fairly typical is 'Student house available September 2024 for a group of 4 students' gets enquiries from unemployed people on UC wanting somewhere next week.

    If they can't read the first line of an advert what chance is there of reading the rest of it?
    However, proper measurements or floor plans will be a one off hassle and for those of us renting decent accommodation will probably boost the rent we can charge.

     
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    @ Jo Westlake, Read the advert? Asn if. I have lost count of the number of enquiries that ask, "when is it available? Is it furnished? Will they accept a dog/children etc" when the advert, in the description, gives the available date, states it is unfurnished, not suitable for pets/children etc.

     
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    I get the impression people looking for somewhere to rent are just desperate to find anything!

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    Yes they mostly are. Some can afford to be a bit more fussy if there are 2 people working, no pets, no kids. But that's about it.

     
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    None of this tosh will affect me as I'm selling as soon as a tenant leaves....I will NEVER be re-renting any of my properties again. Thank you Scottish Government. Shane has left the building............

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    Ditto Shane. The lights are going out on the PRS.

     
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    We are down to 2 from 6 a few years ago

     
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    A typical advert nowadays would be: Flat to let.... Sorry, now taken.

    This guy clearly doesn't understand the difference between buying and renting a property, but then the drive is clearly to give renters all of the benefits of buying without the responsibilities.

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    You wonder what they are going to come up with next?

     
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    The Government's final solution is to take back all 2nd home owned properties for refugees, the homeless and unemployed who cannot afford rent.

     
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