New property rules are criticised by association

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PROPERTY professionals have begun a lobbying campaign to keep estate agents’ standards high.

The Portsmouth Property Association believes government proposals to open up the market to new entrants, such as supermarkets and private house sale websites, would reduce standards and put consumers at risk from unscrupulous practices

‘There is clear concern locally against this ill-conceived plan, which will reduce standards and put consumers at risk of unscrupulous practices,’ said Neil Hawkins, PPA secretary and chartered surveyor.

‘It will be a Del Boy charter, paving the way for risk in the same way that happened when the City received the government light touch and became deregulated; we all know what came next.

‘The PPA will lobby hard on this issue, which should be stopped in its tracks.’

The deadline for industry comments on the amendment to the Estate Agents Act 1979, put forward by the Depart of Business Skills and Innovation (BIS) as a way of cutting red tape, closed in August, with results of the consultation due any week.