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New Announcement: Material Information From Property Listings Are To Be Made Mandatory As Early As May This Year 

22.04.22 11:37 AM By Lucy
estate agency software

By the end of May 2022, The National Trading Standards has requested for all material information regarding property listings to be made mandatory. This includes the need to provide a property’s council tax band or rate, tenure information as well as the price of a property.

                                                                                                                                

The National Trading Standards Estate & Letting Agency Team established a group comprising of industry stakeholders, property portals, professional bodies on behalf of agents and the government to help support businesses with the marketing and advertising of properties by defining what constitutes material information for listings. Additionally, they also provide a framework of disclosed information that complies with the legal requirements of the CPRs. 


Originally, the Property Misdescriptions Act (PMA) controlled the regulation of property advertisements. However, this was replaced by the CPR, or now more commonly known as the Consumer Protection From Unfair Trading Regulations in 2008 to provide more clarity to potential house buyers.

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The Three-Step Process Of The Material Information Disclosure Project

The project conducted by The National Trading Standards Estate & Lettings Agency includes a plan made up of three different stages.Parts A, B & C.


Part A

Information regardless of location and outcome is always considered material for all properties. This includes unavoidable costs that will be incurred by an occupier.


Part A – information fields now required from May 2022

  1.  Tenure (applicable for sales lettings only)
  2.  Council tax band – (Needs to be provided by those who live in Wales, England and Scotland) or the rates payable - (needs to be disclosed if from   Northern Ireland).
  3.  Rent Amount or Price of Property


Part B

Information that must be established for all properties. This can include information such as utilities where non-standard decisions could potentially affect someone’s decision to purchase the property overall. 


Part C

Any further material information that may be needed to be established dependent on if that specifically affects the property itself. For example, the location of the property may put some buyers off from originally being interested in a particular property.

Current Status 

As mentioned above, the relevant information for part A will be made mandatory next month. However, only Part A is being set as a standard requirement in May by The National Trading Standards with Parts B and C being currently reviewed and are still in the development stages. Stages B and C are therefore yet to be made a compulsory standard and will be available in due course. 

Why Are These Changes Occurring?

Estate Agency Software

The aim of introducing new disclosure rules is to provide consumers with more transparency when buying or letting a property. This is an attempt to make the buying process fairer for potential tenants and house buyers. For example, awareness of a property’s tenure when interested in purchasing a property will allow a client to make a more informed decision when they embark on a property search.


Another benefit to this project is that bringing conveyancers on board at the offset will also allow for any issues highlighted to be addressed earlier by the vendor or the agent themselves thus making the property process much easier to navigate particularly for a first-time buyer on the market.

The need for material information to become a standard is also reiterated by a number of influential people within the industry.  

James Munro, a senior member of the National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team states:


‘“This represents an important milestone in the journey to improve material information on property listings. I’m delighted with the progress that has been made with the industry to help define and clarify what constitutes material information and I am grateful to the property portals and other industry leaders who have supported this work”’.


A recent survey conducted by The NTS and its industry partners found that out of 300 agents, 91% agreed that a defined list of basic material information would help improve clarity for the industry and 93% supported the mandatory disclosure of information relating to property tenure.

In addition, the scheme is endorsed by the government by highlighting the importance of the project in their recent white paper, ‘Levelling Up The United Kingdom’. It has also been suggested that legislation is likely to occur.


Levelling Up Minister Neil O’Brien MP states:


‘“A key part of levelling up is creating a fair and just housing system that works for everyone, and this includes supporting more first-time buyers to move onto the housing ladder…Far too often when buying and selling properties, deals fall through, costing young people thousands of pounds in wasted expense. By providing all the necessary information up front, this can be avoided, and it will make the process of buying a first home much easier and more cost-effective.”’


Overall, the project not only benefits estate and letting agents but also the vendor themselves by allowing a clearer understanding of each property from the beginning of the property search. 


If you are interested in how Rezi can improve your processes through automation, client portals & electronic accessibility, book a demo with a member of our friendly sales team today! In Rezi, these new mandatory information requirements can be included within the property description.

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