Caroline Kenny, the outspoken chair of the UK Association of
Letting Agents, has stated that she does not believe that a central
regulator would be beneficial for the rental sector.
She instead favours a more 'targeted' method. She
said: "UKALA believes that regulation must be
proportionate to the issues or problems it seeks to address and it
appears that a more targeted response is necessary to challenge the
negative experience of some and perception of many in the wider
"All of those living and working within the
private rented sector should be able to expect certain minimum
standards from professional agents providing letting and management
"...While we do not believe that a central regulator is
essential to ensure these standards are met, we would support moves
to make these features a mandatory part of all letting and
management services. In practice these elements exemplify the type
of practices and security at the heart of most calls for statutory
ARLA boss says central regulation is a 'win-win'
ARLA director Iain Potter, meanwhile, maintains his support of a
central regulatory body.
He said: "We are not saying our model is the only way - we
welcome the views of the wider industry and are open to debate as
to which body would prove most apt for industry oversight and how
regulation could, and should, work."
"Regulating the sector is a complete win-win. Tenants
will get better quality property and have their rights and money
protected; the industry will be rid of unprofessional practice and
enjoy a better reputation; and the Government will have a simpler
system to oversee and ultimately fewer disputes to
"Failure to regulate will mean that rogue agents continue
to blight the sector, damaging trust in the majority of responsible
agents and resulting in poorer housing conditions and dwindling
The ARLA model is supported by, among others, the shadow housing
minister Jack Dromey and Peter Bolton King of RICS