Rent Smart Wales has now been established

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It is a busy time for the private rented sector in Wales. Rent Smart Wales has been created as part of Cardiff Council to licence all landlords and agents in Wales. They will have to register and apply for a licence by 23rd November 2016 in order to comply with the new legislation or otherwise be subject to a fine. During its first year, the new service will focus on raising awareness of the new requirements and encourage compliance.

 It has been introduced to help regulate unregistered agents i.e. not part of a membership body, by legislatively requiring all landlords and letting agents to register with it. It is hoped this will stop the unfair practices of those unregistered agents.

 However, immediately stopping unfair practices may prove tricky and the real devil will come in the detail. All landlords and letting agents signed up to the scheme will be subject to a code of practice that has yet to be published. It is unclear though how Rent Smart Wales will evaluate the continuation of unfair practices and adherence to the code of practice and thus measure its own success. For now though, the scheme is simply focused on registration and training.

 TDS has been following the legislative developments of the creation of this new service for some time now. Professor Martin Partington QC, The Dispute Service Chair, former Law Commissioner for England and Wales, has already written expert blogs on this subject which can be accessed here – May 2012, April 2013, May 2014, Sep 2014 and the Resident Landlords Association have even written a guest blog on the subject for us July 2014.

 With another piece of legislation on rental housing that has been laid before the Welsh Assembly Government (to read more on those proposed provisions please click here – Feb 2015) it is important time for those affected by the changes.

 For more detail and to keep up to date on developments please visit the Rent Smart Wales website, which can be accessed here.

Posted by on 24 November 2015

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