Customer Area

Trading Standards issues new guidance to Estate Agents

On the 30th of November 2023 Trading Standards issued new guidance to Estate Agents aimed at  meeting the legal requirement for what Material Information should be obtained prior to marketing a property.

They said

“Agents are already obliged under the Consumer Protection Regulations (CPRs) not to omit any material information on property listings. Although material information is any information that is important in helping an average consumer make a decision about a property, until now there hasn’t been a defined list of the basic information required.”

This in effect is likely to change the whole landscape for agents, conveyancers and search companies. Trading Standards encourage sellers to instruct conveyancers when the house comes to market in order they can assist in the compilation of this Key Material Information.

Full details can be seen here

But the key sections come under parts B & C specifically section 2 which says NTSELAT’s view is that any known restriction can be material information, particularly where it could impact the buyer’s general use of the property and/or land.

They go on to mention items including

  • Conservation areas
  • Restriction on permitted development.
  • Tree preservation orders
  • Listed buildings.

All these and more are included within a standard local search and thus the only realistic and cost-effective way to comply would be to complete a search when marketing the property.

This is a HUGE change and takes us back to the days of Home Information Packs.

The issue now is how will Trading standards enforce these changes and what level of uptake will we see from estate agents.

Answers on a postcard ….