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August brought the summer sunshine to London. The inaugural meeting of the soon to be formed House Buyer Association took place near Euston Station in central london with National Property Trade in attendance along with 12 other companies and The Property Ombusman (TPO). It was agreed that the existing property Ombusman codes apply to estate agents and property brokers but not property buyers. So all property brokers who source property for investors should already be members of the TPO and those brokers not currently members are operating outside existing legislation covered in the estate agent act. The TPO currently regulate Estate Agents and have in light of the OFT recommendations offered to extend their membership to principle property buyers also known as cash buyers. This code will cover buyers who are buying property directly from vendors using pre approved funding or faculties.

It was voted unanimously by those present to proceed with setting up a separate House Buyer Association which would cover exclusively House Buyers. It is to be a voluntary membership but the code would be clearly in the interests of consumers and policed by the TPO who would manage any redress sought by consumers against any members.

National Property Trade will be joining the HBA, are we proud to be founding members. It was an easy decision for us because and support its agenda entirely and already abide by the code in our course of business. Vendors will be able to approach property buyers with confidence and it will weed out the shoddy practices so vendors can sell with confidence. In cleaning up the market and importantly, making it clear who are genuine buyers and who are brokers, consumers will be well informed to make the right choice that suits them and only engage with a professional and ethical companies.

In advance of this code NPT have our own code of standards which can be seen in the how it works section –

We also have a clear complaints procedure if we have fallen short of your expectations.

We will keep the updates coming as the new association progresses, for now that’s all for this month and it would appear that’s the end of the summer sunshine for another year. Although short it was at least nice to get outside for a change!

by Cormac Henderson

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