In an industry that currently doesn’t have mandatory membership of a regulatory body, the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) and National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) have launched Propertymark.

In effect, there will be a new “kitemark” of excellence that unites the two organisations in their drive to protect landlords and renters from rogue lettings agents. Given the significant challenges the industry is facing, it is clear, now more than ever before, the public needs a far better understanding of how to choose a property agent that has the consumer’s interest at heart, and is regulated by law.

David Cox, ARLA Propertymark Chief Executive, and Mark Hayward, NAEA Propertymark Chief Executive, said: “Having a home is the most important issue for consumers and our members are there to protect and guide people with their property transactions. At present, customers don’t know where to go for advice or can’t be sure if they are dealing with a professional. We are changing this. We will reach out to customers directly so they recognise Propertymark and understand that by using a Propertymark Protected agent they and their money are safe.

“Propertymark is a stamp of approval for consumers when they seek professional property expertise in buying, selling, renting, leasing, or valuing a property. It stands for protection for the consumer, and offers the highest standards and qualifications among property professionals. Propertymark Protected agents have opted for regulation in an unregulated sector, and provide reassurance for consumers as well as protection against rogue operators.”