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Guidance for Lettings Professionals

The Competition and Markets Authority has updated its guidance for lettings professional on complying with consumer protection laws and laws about dealing with other businesses, in the context of letting privately owned residential properties.

On 3 October a clarification was added to page 49 of the guidance, and to the details section on the page. This clarification is in relation to the example of ‘housing benefit claimants’ in the guidance. Specially this relates to the practise of landlords or agents having blanket bans on tenants claiming benefits. Our previous post on this topic can be read here. A further blog will be posted on this issue next week.

The guidance is some 96 pages so we have set out the key areas covered. Further reading and is strongly recommended for those in the private rental sector.

The guide is aimed at lettings agents, landlords and anyone acting for or in the name of landlords or their agents. The guide includes an overview of legislation relevant to the private rental sector including:

  1. The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (CPRs);
  2. The Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations 2008 (BPRs);
  3. The Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 (UTCCRs);
  4. The Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 (SGSA);
  5. The Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977 (UCTA).

The guide also includes advice on 6 key areas:

  • What an agent should do when advertising to and contracting with landlords;
  • What they should do when providing information to potential tenants;
  • What should be done when negotiating, conducting viewings and arranging and signing the tenancy agreement;
  • What should be done immediately before and at the time the tenant moves in;
  • How a property should be managed after the tenants has moved in;
  • What should occur on renewal or termination of the tenancy.

For each key area the action that the legislation above requires is discussed in further detail along with examples. Further detailed blogs will be posted on some of these key areas.

The guidance concludes with details on the enforcement action agents, landlords, or relevant third parties could face if there is a breach of any relevant legislation and a summary of housing legislation more generally.


The contents of this blog post is not legal advice and is provided for general information purposes only. If legal advice is needed readers should contact a solicitor. No responsibility for any information contained within this post is accepted and PainSmith solicitors accepts no liability in respect of the contents or for action taken based on this post.


Published 17 October 2019

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