Propertymark: National licensing of landlords not the ‘magical solution’

Propertymark has spoken out against the national landlord register talked up by campaign group Generation Rent.

The estate agency group argued that such a scheme wouldn’t be properly enforced, while it suggested that regulation of letting agents would be a better place to focus government policy.

Timothy Douglas, policy and campaigns officer, said: “Propertymark does not believe that licensing schemes are an effective way of promoting higher quality accommodation in the private rented sector.

“This is because most schemes fail as they are not adequately resourced to undertake the necessary enforcement activity.

“The licensing regime becomes an administrative exercise, penalising those landlords who comply with the regulations whilst still allowing the landlords that the scheme was designed to target to continue operating under the radar.

“Consequently, a national landlord register on its own is not the magical solution to improve the effectiveness of property licensing.

“Ultimately, we believe that full mandatory government regulation of letting agents, including landlords fully-managing property, is the quickest and most effective way of driving up standards in the private rented sector.”

Generation Rent, alongside non-profit organisation Centre for Public Data, highlighted the disparity between councils using licencing schemes and those that don’t.

Those that do use schemes identify more unsafe homes and resolve a higher proportion of issues.

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