Property guardians must have a “bedrock of rights” so that their legal rights are adequately protected, according to a discussion in the House of Lords last month.
Baroness Grender posed the question of “what steps they are taking to ensure that property guardians are legally protected” to the House.
Property guardians have some legal protections – but depending on the arrangements in place, these protections are often fewer than those of tenants.
Lord Best, who is the chair of a Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government working group for the regulation of property agents, said he “would be very happy to look at the regulation of property guardian providers, alongside his current portfolio of estate agents, letting agents and managers of leasehold properties”.
Lord Bourne added that there had to be a drive “ensuring that property guardians have a bedrock of rights in all situations so that people are properly protected. That is the key.”
The issues often encountered include disrepair including penetrating damp or condensation mould growth, through to unmanaged compliance issues such asbestos, faults with fire alarm panels, lack of electrical and gas safety certificates.
Suggestions put forward include a ‘kite-marking’ scheme and non-disclosure agreements in contracts.