Speaking as part of this week’s French Connection, which can be read in full on pages 20-21, David Salusbury, chairman of the NLA, insisted he did not want the letting industry to see itself ‘in conflict with the landlord sector’ as both parts needed to work together.
He said: “The NLA has taken a firm view that the practice of charging a percentage of the rent at the time that the tenancy is renewed is something that is unnecessary and wrong. But I think it should be said that the NLA does not see itself in conflict with letting agents. The overwhelming majority of letting agents work hard and provide a good service to their landlord clients and to the tenants which they look after on behalf of their landlord clients. We want a healthy letting agent sector and we want a healthy landlord part of the sector.”
Salusbury believed it was essential for both sides to highlight bad practice when it came up as issues were often ‘two sides of the same coin’.
Malcolm Harrison, spokesman for the Association of Residential Letting Agents, believed a partnership attitude was key.
“The letting agent’s client is the landlord and both have a duty of care to the tenant so they need to work together. Especially if the landlord has a day job, which many do, it is good for them to know that if things go wrong, there is someone whose prime job is looking after property helping them out.”