An agent is a person who has the power to represent another legal party (the principal) and brings the principal into a legal relationship with a third party.
Agents Common Law Dutys
Agents Legal Rights
Authority & Agent of Necessity
What is ARLA?
The Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) is the only professional body that is solely concerned with the self-regulation of letting agents and since 1981 has been actively promoting the highest standards across every aspect of residential lettings and management in the Private Rented Sector.
ARLA is viewed by government, consumer groups, academics, think tanks and the media as the leading voice in the industry. ARLA members are seen as being at the forefront of the Private Rented Sector, ready, willing and able to comply with existing and anticipated government legislation. ARLA members successfully create, on average, over a quarter of a million new tenancies a year as well as arranging the renewal or extension of thousands more of existing tenancies every month.
Why should a landlord or tenant seek out an ARLA Member?
ARLA leads the industry in setting and regulating the highest standards in the industry and demands certain levels of professionalism and commitment to customer service from its membership.
ARLA members are required to work within a robust Code of Practice, which covers the key stages in letting and managing a property. There are comprehensive membership Byelaws which include compliance with such issues as handling and accounting for Clients’ money; the mandatory ARLA Client Money Protection Bonding Scheme; Professional Indemnity Insurance; Dealing with Complaints and Disciplinary Procedures.
ARLA members are required to employ a minimum of at least one member of staff, in any office, who holds a suitable industry qualification, recognised by the Association.
ARLA keeps it members up to date with changes in legislation and provides wide-ranging training and guidance to help members understand and interpret all aspects of letting and managing a property.
By using a licensed ARLA agent you are guaranteed:
That the agency is covered by our Client Money Protection (CMP) Scheme.
The ARLA have the ability to make discretionary grants (up to pre-set limits) if you suffer financial loss due to the bankruptcy or dishonesty of the member and/or their firm.
Look at our CMP guide to find out more.
Why is an Inventory Needed?
A professionally drawn up inventory and schedule of condition will protect you from any unwarranted disputes by the tenant at the end of the tenancy. If there is an insufficient, outdated or even worse no inventory then you will have no evidence of what the property was like at the start of the tenancy. This means that if you or the agent are unable to provide documentary evidence that the tenant caused damage, then you will not be in a strong position to make a claim, in the event the tenant contests the matter
Why not save money and do it yourself?
Compiling an inventory and schedule of condition is a skill and should be carried out by someone qualified to do so. The inventory is an important document and one that may need to be relied upon as evidence in the event of a dispute and may be liable to the scrutiny of a Court of Law.
The inventory is not just a list of items placed in or on the premises, a proper inventory will include a schedule of condition of the property itself as well as the fixtures, fittings and contents. A professionally qualified inventory provider is also likely to be deemed to be impartial and will note the property in the condition in which it is found both at the start and end of the tenancy
Ask you Agent about APIP
You are entitled to find out who is going to be documenting the details of your property. Ask your agent for details of the inventory provider’s qualifications and experience.
An inventory provider who is a member of the APIP (MAPIP) will have gone through training and passed an assessment based on their competency to conduct the inventory compilation, check in and check out. The candidate must also provide evidence of at least 6 months hands on experience of the role.
For your further protection members are required to have adequate, up to date public liability and professional indemnity insurance.
This demonstration of the level of competency required by the industry is aimed to give the landlord the confidence that they have the protection of professional documentation to support any claim in the event of a dispute.
How often should the Inventory be updated?
The inventory should be drawn up from scratch when an agent first takes on the property. Thereafter it should be properly updated and printed out at the start of each new tenancy. Each new tenancy should have an inventory that is unencumbered by comments relating to previous tenancies at the same property.
There are useful guides (download & hardcopy) available free from the following websites. Here are a sample of what is available, please click on the relevant link.
Government Community Website:
Assured & Assured Shorthold Tenancies – A Guide for Landlords
Assured Shorthold Tenancies – A Guide for Tenants