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ARLA steps up call for agents' compulsory accreditation to combat fraud

ARLA steps up call for agents' compulsory accreditation to combat fraud

ARLA is stepping up its call for letting agents to have professional qualifications in a bid to combat fraud.

In a contribution to BBC News website's features on Scams Awareness Month, the association's managing director David Cox says the organisation has been lobbying for compulsory accreditation for some time.

Figures from Action Fraud show that reports of rental fraud in England and Wales rose from 2,216 in 2014 to 3,193 last year and according to the Local Government Association only five per cent of all scams are reported because victims are too embarrassed or didn't realise their plight.

"Solicitors, accountants and doctors must all have qualification so why not letting agents? It is not acceptable in the modern world" says Cox.

ARLA - which has long campaigned for client money protection - says it is estimated that letting agents currently hold approximately £2.7 billion in client funds and yet, if they are not covered by CMP, both the landlord and tenant stand to lose their money.

The Cameron government said it would review its property transparency measures later this year; no announcements on the issue have been made in relation to the new Theresa May-led administration.

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