London Rental Standard Scheme -Calls for Better Communication and Trust in the Private Rented Sector
This article was published on LandlordZONE.
Summer 2014 marked the launch of the London Rental Standard scheme, a new set of guidelines meant to encourage the implementation of legal or professional standards for landlords and agents in London’s private rental sector.
The London Rental Standard, supported by Boris Johnson, has set the basic outline in order to help the private rented sector landlords, agents and tenants rent with peace of mind, in a respectful, lawful and professional way.
Compliance to the London Rental Standard is voluntary, though it has been strongly encouraged by London’s Mayor, who stressed the importance for landlords and agents to guarantee a professional service to tenants and hoped for an increase in the number of accreditations.
Accreditation is not processed by the City Hall itself but is under the responsibility of the designated bodies. More specifically, in order for a business to get accredited, at least one member of staff in each branch would have to attend a lettings course, which can be completed either face-to-face or online. Not only is accreditation a way of showing commitment to the service, but it is also a way of singling out rogue landlords and agents, thus improving safety and trust between all parties.
As the rules of the London Rental Standard outline the minimum standard to be met in the private rented sector, they include things such as transparent fees, improvements of property conditions, more effective communication between landlords and tenants, more prompt maintenance and repairs and protected deposits.
The necessity of issuing an official set of guidelines for the private rented sector is deeply rooted in the changes being faced within London’s fast growing housing market. London, indeed, is overwhelmed with rented homes, which host one fourth of all households in the city and are predicted to increase by 40% in the next 5 years.
However, the majority of landlords ignores the core legislation around the protection of tenants and 61% of all 300,000 landlords in London has no professional management training. Less controversial than the Help-To-Buy scheme, up to now the London Rental Standard has involved 13,499 landlords and 1,495 letting and managing agents, covering the management of at least 39,800 homes.
Along with new measures to boost construction and improve quality, the London Rental Standard scheme was released by the Mayor after two years of consultation and it is predicted to make 100,000 landlords and agents accredited by 2016. The scheme’s main aim is to raise awareness among renters of the legal obligations and set of procedures to which one should comply when renting, in order to offer a prompt, transparent and secure service, thus enhancing the quality of life of everyone involved in the process.
Here at Arthuronline we share the same values. Our online property management software provides landlords, property managers and tenants with a high level of communication and organisation and better access to information, thus relieving everyone from the stress of keeping up with everything that happens in the rental process.
Arthur Online is a platform that facilitates compliance to the London Rental Standard, as it ensures transparency between all parties while having the power to transform and retain landlords’ organisation, coordination and communication. With the possibility of further regulation, these skills are now more crucial than ever to sustain a successful property business.