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The Letting Agent Code of Practice (Scotland) Regulations 2016

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Terms of business

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32.  Your terms of business must be written in plain language and, alongside any other reasonable terms you wish to include, must clearly set out:

(a) Core services

the services you will provide to that landlord and the property they relate to. For example, tenant introduction, lettings service and full management service;

(b) Duration

the duration of the agreement and the date it commences;

(c) Authority to act

a statement about the basis of your authority to act on the landlord’s behalf;

where applicable, a statement of any level of delegated authority, for example financial thresholds for instructing repairs to the property and the purchase of replacement goods;

situations in which you may act without checking with the landlord first, for example urgent repairs;

(f) Fees, charges and financial arrangements

your management fees and charges (including taxes) for your services, and your processes for reviewing and increasing or decreasing this fee;

how you will collect payment including timescales and methods and any charges for late payment;

that where applicable, a statement setting out details of any financial interest in providing third-party services (for example, commission for using certain companies, products or services) is available from you on request;

(i) Tenancy deposits

if a tenancy deposit is to be taken, who will lodge the deposit with one of the approved schemes;

(j) Communication and complaints

that you are subject to this Code and give your clients a copy on request. This may be provided electronically;

how you will communicate (including the use of electronic communication(1) with landlords and tenants, and the timescales within which you could be reasonably expected to respond to enquiries;

your procedures for handling complaints and disputes between you and the landlord and tenants and the timescales within which you could be reasonably expected to respond;

how a landlord and tenant may apply to the Tribunal if they remain dissatisfied after your complaints process has been exhausted, or if you do not process the complaint within a reasonable timescale through your complaints handling procedure;

(n) Conflict of interest

a declaration of any conflict or potential conflict of interest;

(o) Professional indemnity insurance

confirmation that you hold professional indemnity insurance or equivalent protection through another body or membership organisation and that further details (such as the name of your provider, your policy number and a summary of the policy) are available from you on request;

(p) Handling client money

how you handle clients’ money; confirmation that you hold client money protection insurance or equivalent protection through another body or membership organisation and that further details (such as the name of your provider, your policy number and a summary of the policy) are available from you on request;

(q) How to change or end the terms of business

clear information on how to change or end the agreement and any fees or charges (inclusive of taxes) that may apply and in what circumstances. Termination charges and related terms must not be unreasonable or excessive.

(1)

See sections 7 and 15 of the Electronic Communications Act 2000 (c.7).

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