RPSA warns on Estate Agents Act

RPSA warns on Estate Agents Act

The RPSA has warned against the reduced levels of protection for consumers bought about by proposed changes to the Estate Agents Act.

They have warned that if purchasing a property from a private seller, the intermediary that has been promoting the property is under no legal obligation to ensure that the property details provided to the buyer are accurate.

It said that it has never been more important for home buyers to commission their own, independent condition survey for any home they plan to purchase.

The changes recently announced by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), mean that businesses hosting private property sales advertisements will no longer be subject to the Estates Agents Act (EAA).

Alan Milstein, Chairman of the Residential Property Surveyors Association (RPSA), said: “The government’s decision to make businesses promoting private house sales exempt from the EAA could see thousands of home buyers committing to purchase properties without any statutory protection.

“This could lead to considerable confusion among home buyers, with many entering into a purchase, unaware that if any problems should arise, they will not be eligible for any form of redress.”

Mr Milstein think home buyers level of awareness of property survey options available is poor and needs to be addressed.

He said: “A recent poll of our members revealed that a worryingly high proportion of home buyers lack basic awareness about the different property surveys available to them.

“A staggering 72% of respondents to our survey reported that the home buyers they had been in contact with believed their mortgage lenders valuation constituted a survey.

“As a result, thousands of home buyers are finding out the hard way that the property they have purchased requires costly repairs."

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