Government opens the Lettings door to Ombudsman Services

by Communications Team | Apr 11, 2014

New legislation requires all letting and managing agents to belong to an approved redress scheme.

 

Ombudsman Services has today announced that it has been successful in obtaining government approval to operate a redress scheme for lettings and managing agents.

Recent legislative changes mean that all lettings and managing agents will have to belong to an approved redress scheme. Ombudsman Services: Property already operates in this market, and is the chosen ombudsman scheme for the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), the managing agents’ professional body, ARMA, and for the UK Association of Letting Agents (UKALA). Ombudsman Services also has a close working relationship with the National Approved Letting Scheme (NALS).

To continue working in this field required Ombudsman Services to apply separately to Government to obtain approval. We have been successful and have achieved this. To obtain additional government approval is excellent news and further strengthens Ombudsman Services as the redress provider of choice. It also endorses what we do and how we do it.

Chief Ombudsman Lewis Shand Smith says: “To obtain additional government approval is excellent news and further strengthens Ombudsman Services as the redress provider of choice for the property sector. It also endorses what we do and how we do it. We already have many lettings and managing agents as participating companies and this change does not affect them. We welcome any new company who chooses Ombudsman Services: Property and we would also encourage them to join one of the trade associations with whom we have a strong relationship.”

UKALA CEO Richard Price commented: “We welcome the news that the Government has introduced approved redress schemes across the sector and we’re looking forward to working with Ombudsman Services in the future in helping our members solve any issues they have as easily as possible.”

NALS CEO Isobel Thomson also said: “This is good news for the lettings sector and the consumer. A number of NALS firms are already signed up to Ombudsman Services: Property and we are delighted they have been formally approved by the Government. We look forward to continuing to work closely with them.”

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Notes to editors

  • Ombudsman Services is a not for profit, private company limited by guarantee. 
  • Ombudsman Services runs national, private sector ombudsman schemes which provides independent dispute resolution for the communications, energy, property, copyright licensing sectors, the Green Deal, the ABFA, Reallymoving.com and Which? Trusted Traders scheme.
  • The Chief Ombudsman’s speech about the future of Ombudsman Services in a changing consumer redress landscape can be accessed here
  • Ombudsman Services provides an expert dispute resolution service. The services focuses on encouraging early agreed resolution wherever possible and does not charge a fee so it’s able to offer access to redress for consumers to resolve their complaints without proceeding to the civil courts.
  • Ombudsman Services is a full member of the Ombudsman Association (OA) and adheres to its principles.

Further information about Ombudsman Services can be found at www.ombudsman-services.org

For further information, please contact the press office:

Tel:                 01925 431 029

Out of hours:   07808 789 548

Email:  press@ombudsman-services.org