Commenting, he said: “Consumer protection is of paramount of importance to the Private Rented Sector (PRS). For too long, the reputation of an entire industry has been affected by the bad practice of a few letting agents and we therefore give strong backing to the TPO.
“The introduction of the ARLA licensing scheme for letting agents in 2009 has been fundamental to its goal of ongoing sector self assessment and improvement. Since the scheme was introduced for member agents, thousands have signed up and the Government has recognised our efforts.
“However, the rise in consumer complaints is commensurate to the increase in lettings activity and provides even more grounds for a Government-backed scheme for the better control of all letting agents. Until the Government acts, we therefore urge all consumers to use an agent who belongs to a professional body and to ensure that their landlords also do so. This will ensure that they receive the best advice and the reassurance of using a qualified agent under the security of a redress scheme.”