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The Property Ombudsman (TPO) has been approved by The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) to provide a redress service to landlords and tenants, so all letting agents must be registered with a redress scheme. This legal obligation will come into effect towards the end of 2014.

If customers are dissatisfied by the service they have received by a registered firm, their complaint will be independantly investigated and reviewed by TPO. There is currently around 11,000 registered agents, Monreal Shaw being one of them, who have voluntarily joined the scheme and follow the TPO's codes of practice.

Below is a quote from Christopher Hamer, The Ombudsman who shares his thoughts and views.

"As the largest redress scheme in the property sector I am naturally very pleased that TPO has received official recognition from the government as an approved redress scheme. With 60% of UK letting agents already in membership with TPO this will mean no change for them.

"However, TPO experienced a 34.2% increase in the number of consumer enquiries relating to letting agents not registered with TPO during 2013, which really underlines the importance of mandatory redress for letting and management agents.

"Whilst my role as Ombudsman means that I am not a regulator and I can only review complaints after a dispute has occurred, making redress a legal requirement for lettings is a positive move to enhance consumer protection. Clearly it would be better if complaints did not arise in the first place and robust legislation to enforce controls was in place.

"That said, the Government has been quite clear about their desire to see the industry self-regulate and I believe that compulsory redress is one of the many safeguards needed for consumers.

"We will now emphasise to agents not currently registered with a redress scheme the benefits of joining TPO, not the least of which is that those agents will be able to demonstrate to their landlords and tenants that they follow the comprehensive set of standards contained in the TPO Code of Practice – the only Code of its kind in the industry – and we look forward to welcoming many more agents to the scheme following our government approval."

At Monreal Shaw, our clients come first and we do all we can to ensure that the service provided to them is of the highest standard. By being a member of TPO, you can be assured that you are dealing with a honest and reliable agency.


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