ARLA's campaign for compulsory CMP takes a positive turn

Friday 22 April 2016

There was welcome news for ARLA's campaign for mandatory Client Money Protection (CMP) last week as the amendment was added to the Housing and Planning Bill after being accepted by Government at report stage.

The amendment gives the Secretary of State powers to enforce client money protection (CMP) on letting agents, though it is at their discretion.

Whilst the amendment falls short of mandatory CMP which had been the basis of the amendment that we originally submitted, supported by Labour parliamentarians lead by Baroness Hayter, it is very much a key and important 'enabler' along the road to this. 

Client Money Protection is already compulsory for ARLA Licensed agents and some NAEA agents and it provides landlords and tenants protection in the event of a letting agent misappropriating funds. 

The Government will review the need for mandatory CMP later this year, which is when we hope mandatory CMP to be brought forward by the Government. 

Following Wednesday's reading of the Housing and Planning Bill, David Cox, managing director of Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA), comments on amendments regarding joining client money protection schemes: 

 “This is positive news for consumers and a great example of the industry and policy makers working together to champion consumer interests. At present, property agents are not legally required to join client money protection (CMP) schemes which leaves tenants and landlords at risk of losing money.

 “This new measure means that when Government reviews its property transparency measures later this year, there is a real chance that CMP could finally become mandatory for all property agents in the UK. Consumers may finally have a guarantee that their money is safe and we will continue to work alongside DCLG to make this a reality.”