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lettings regulation
NALS members
now ‘licensed’
to let
1800 letting instantly connects this with
agency offices protection, demonstrable quality
across the UK and a benchmark of acceptable
will shortly have standards.”
a new kitemark The National Approved Letting
denoting that Scheme is a Government-
they are licensed to let property. supported scheme for letting
These offices are all members of agents that establishes minimum
the National Approved Letting levels of customer service and
Scheme (NALS); previously the accounting. Members must have
agents were ‘accredited members Professional Indemnity and Client
of NALS’ – now they are now Money Protection insurances and
‘licensed’. be members of a redress scheme
NALS Chair, Caroline Pickering such as The Property Ombudsman.
(pictured) comments, “All letting A new ‘licensed’ kitemark will be
agents bearing the NALS kitemark supplied to members by the end of
are now fully licensed operators September. Caroline Pickering says,
under the NALS scheme. This is a “We all know and relate to the
compelling proposition for agents, term ‘licensing’. It’s about making
In for a pound – the posh pile in
landlord and tenants given that it easy for the tenants and
the consumer directly engages landlords to understand what a Discount retailers have about pound stores, they are
with the term ‘licensed’ and NALS licensed firm means – increased by 60 per cent growing in popularity and
essentially that’s protection. We during the last two years more importantly, generate
‘All letting agents believe it is important we ensure according to new research by jobs and footfall that benefits
bearing the NALS
that the consumer is absolutely the Local Data Company other retailers on the high
clear which agents will deliver backed by the British Property street. This is good for
kitemark are now
clearly defined standards of Federation (BPF). landlords who would much
service, this is one of the measures Just under half of the 1,423 rather have a discount retailer
fully licensed we are putting in place to discount stores across Great than an empty store. British
operators under
guarantee this.” Britain are in London and the Land, Land Securities, Prupim,
The use of the word ‘licensed’ is South East and for every one St Modwen and Westfield all
the scheme.’
another step towards the discount retailer that closes, have pound store tenants.”
regulation of letting agents and two have opened. Regions with Ian Parish, head of retail at
landlords. the most discount shops property agents BNP Paribas
include Greater London (357 Real Estate, said, “Discount
outlets), the South East (250), retailers have undoubtedly
Yorkshire & The Humber (137) seen an opportunity to acquire
and the North West (135). new stores at rents more easily
Customer bases have also viable for them when they are
have i got news for you
drastically changed. selling goods at lower margins
Gordon is a …
Poundland, for example, has than their more mainstream
seen a 22 per cent increase in counterparts. Clearly, this
the numbers of shoppers from sector is also seeing a wider
the richer AB group. customer base walking
Hayling Island Estate Agency, Traditionally, their target through its doors with
Millers, entered a scarecrow of market has driven by females household budgets stretched
Gordon Brown hunting for a in the C2, D and E socio- and, combined with cheaper
‘second home!’ in their local economic groups. The change rents, this seems to be leading
competition; it did better than has occurred because discount them on the expansion trail.
Gordon may do in a general retailers have moved into more Given the current vacancy rate,
election – it came third! affluent areas such as I’m sure the property industry
Director Roy Pine said, “He is Cambridge, Oxford and is very happy that these
certainly a popular entry! We dummies, a poodle called Tony Tunbridge Wells. operators are expanding.”
have had lots of people coming and details of a deceptively Liz Peace, chief executive of
in and complimenting us! We spacious property available the BPF, said, “Whatever
added a copy of ‘Politics for soon in Downing Street!” opinions people may have
8 octoBER 2009 PROPeRTYdrum
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