Latest News

Agents’ views sought on property listings

20 April 2021

The National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team (NTSELAT) has today, 20 April, launched a consultation to gather information to develop guidance as to what should be considered material information on property listings and portals. Read More...

New Stamp Duty surcharge for non-UK residents

01 April 2021

From today, 1 April 2021, a two per cent higher rate of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) will apply to purchasers of residential property in England and Northern Ireland who are not resident in the UK. Read More...

Report finds HMRC ‘broadly’ fulfilling AML supervision role

30 March 2021

HMRC has published a self-assessment of its money laundering supervisory performance, which is broadly in line with the relevant Money Laundering Regulations and OPBAS sourcebook, however stating there was room for improvement. Read More...

Agents urged to support lone workers

24 March 2021

With many agents required to work alone, it is important employers put in place measures to ensure their safety. After the tragic disappearance in 1986 of estate agent, Suzy Lamplugh, the Trust, in her name, provides guidance for workers to reduce the risk of violence and aggression. Read More...

Treasury announces tax administration reform and new proposals in first-ever ‘Tax Day’

23 March 2021

HM Treasury has released its ‘Tax Day command paper’ designed to allow further scrutiny on tax announcements that would normally take place during the budget. Read More...

Next steps for leasehold reform in Wales

17 March 2021

The Welsh Government has published new research into the sale and use of leaseholds where the Housing Minister, Julie James MS, sets out her intentions for reforming the sector. The action plan considers other evidence from the Task and Finish Group on Leasehold Reform and recommendations made by the Law Commission. Read More...

 

Guidance for members unchanged as England moves to next stage of roadmap

Monday 29 March 2021

From Monday 29 March the UK Government will start to ease lockdown restrictions on social contact, business and activities, and travel in England. Whilst there will be no changes to safety guidance for the property sector, Propertymark is reviewing the guidance that has supported members to work safely and given the UK Government the confidence to allow agents to keep working throughout lockdown.

England

The main headline changes to social restrictions include permission for outdoor gatherings of either six people (rule of six) or two households; the opening of outdoor sports facilities; and the end of the ‘stay at home’ rule in England, although people will still be encouraged to work from home where possible and minimise the number of journeys they make.

As there will be no change to safety guidance affecting the property sector, it is vital that businesses and individuals continue to comply with the UK Government guidance. This is particularly important because, as more people receive their vaccination, parties to residential viewings are increasingly questioning the need for restrictions, particularly on rules such as wearing masks and social distancing during property viewings.

Wales

Although no roadmap has been published, the Welsh Government has outlined a short-term timetable.

On 27 March the ‘stay local’ rules were lifted alongside unrestricted travel within Wales’s borders, with self-contained tourist accommodation - including many hotels and cottages – now able to open. However, travel to and from other UK nations will be banned for at least another two weeks.

Six people from two households can meet up outside and organised outdoor activities and sports can resume, while limited openings of outdoor open areas, such as historical places & gardens, are permitted.

From 12 April Welsh Ministers are expecting to ease more restrictions.

Scotland

In Scotland four people of up to two households can meet outside, with outdoor non-contact sports and organised group exercise permitted. Communal worship is also now allowed with up to 50 attending (if it is possible to incorporate social distancing).

The next step is for the stay at home rule to become ‘stay local’ on 2 April. On 5 April, more businesses will be able to re-open and all school pupils can go back between the 12 April. Towards the end of the month, from 26 April, there will be a return to the ‘levels’ system of local restrictions, with travel within mainland Scotland permitted. There will also be a wider opening-up of the economy and further loosening of the restrictions on social gathering.

Northern Ireland

The Northern Irish Executive will ease restrictions from 1 April, when people can meet for exercise in groups of up to 10 from two households. Golf and other outdoor sporting activities can resume (although clubhouses and sports facilities must stay closed) and up to six people from two households can meet in a private garden. Garden centres will be able to operate click-and-collect services.

From 12 April, remaining school year groups 8-11 return and the stay at home message is expected to be relaxed. All other non-essential retail can operate click-and-collect and sports training with up to 15 people can resume. Up to 10 people from two households will be able to meet in a private garden.

Propertymark guidance on working safely

Propertymark’s guidance overlays UK Government guidelines for the sector and is tailored to help our members. 

This guidance is continually reviewed against input from Propertymark regional member representatives, taking account of the latest changes announced by the UK Government as well as those of the devolved nations and we are committed to keeping members updated.

We also continue to work with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) to ensure that the property sector has a voice in shaping what agents are allowed to do.

Further resources from Propertymark

Visit our website to access the latest guidance and advice on working during the pandemic. This includes the financial support available for landlords, renters and homeowners and best practice when working from home.

We also have a dedicated page containing guidance on house moves and viewings whilst adhering to the restrictions. This includes tips and guidance on listing properties and viewings, taking into account the rules in different regions of the UK. You can also visit our YouTube channel to watch a video containing top tips for conducting property viewings safely.

Member Representatives are actively feeding into our work, ensuring that we listen to member’s concerns. To feed in please contact your Regional Representative.

Quote mark

While it’s good news that we’re moving to a new phase of lockdown, it's important agents continue to observe the restrictions. As members of the public are vaccinated, questions are being raised about the rules meaning the property industry has a crucial role to play.

We’ll continue to keep members updated and I urge you to review the guidance to ensure you’re up to date.

Angela Davey

Angela Davey
ARLA Propertymark President