Your agent, as minimum, should be signed up to the Rent Smart Wales scheme. The introduction of this scheme by the Welsh government has promoted better awareness of good landlord and agent practice through the compulsory training courses and provides a register of landlords and agents that are considered fit and proper. For the private landlord sector, I think this introduction has been a positive move. For agents, I don’t think it goes far enough.
The Rent Smart Wales Scheme is a minimum requirement and you should not base your instruction on this alone and you should look for additional securities. Firstly, your agent should be a member of UKALA (The UK Association of Letting Agents) or ARLA. These professional bodies are joined voluntarily by the best agents to set them apart from the other agents. To be a part of one of these bodies you must hold separate client and office accounts, so the funds of the business and that of the clients are kept separate. The client account must be insured by ‘Client Money Protection Insurance’ that will protect your money against a fraudulent act by the agent. Other conditions of membership include appropriate levels of professional indemnity insurance and an approved inspection of your accounts and accounts procedures. These securities really set the good agents apart from the average or the out and out dangerous.
Thank you for everything. The service, professionalism and effort has been above what would be expected. Thank you. Richard & Laura