Lettings Technical Awards – PASSED!
October 24, 2011
I am delighted to say I have passed all four of the lettings technical awards required to become a member of ARLA.
In the 1990’s I sat (and passed!) my accountancy exams. It was the first set of exams I sat that I felt had a real relevance to my day to day activities. These Lettings exams are the same.
You take the studying lightly at your peril. The (multiple choice) questions test the full range of the syllabus. At Young London we generally deal with 1 to 3 bedroom flats on Assured Shorthold Tenancies (ASTs). However, the exams test all types of tenancies, from company lets to Assured Tenancies from those under the Rent Act 1977 to licences, not forgetting HMOs to Housing Benefit. I found it interesting studying the areas that I do not normally deal with, as it broadens your knowledge.
It does frighten me how many agencies are run by people who do not have this grounding. They are dealing with legal contracts and your money (whether you are a landlord, applicant or tenant) with no formal training. Is the rent they are processing protected by Client Money Protection Insurance (CMP)? Has your deposit been registered with a custodial or insurance backed scheme? Are they aware of the standards to comply with the Housing Health and Safety Rating System as set out in the Housing Act 2004?
The manual you receive to study runs to over 600 pages – there is a lot to learn. There is information about data protection, inventories and health and safety. It is so relevant, and yes much of it you know before you read through it, however, it is good to challenge the way you currently operate, and have an open mind about learning more of the detail.
Many of my colleagues have commenced studying – good luck.