The OFT’s draft guidance details how the law applies to the lettings market – from the advertising of a property, to the interaction with tenants before they move into a property, all the way to the expiration of the tenancy agreement.
The guidance is focussed on four pieces of legislation: The Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations 2008 (BPRs), The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (CPRs), the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 (SGSA), and The Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999 (UTCCRs).
The Property Misdescriptions Act, which did not apply to letting agents, has been replaced by CPRs, which does. It means lettings agents cannot be careless in how a property is presented. Misleading statements about a property, or not providing the tenant with straightforward information about fees are trading practices the OFT’s draft guidance has identified as breaching legislation.
The OFT welcomes comment from tenants, letting agents, or other interested parties. The consultation will run until 10 December. The guidance comes in response to the OFT’s report on the lettings market, published in February, which identified a number of concerns regarding the application of consumer laws in the lettings industry.
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