There is a great article in this month's (November)Your Property Network magazinewritten by Professional Sourcing Compliance Managing Director Tina Walsh on the subject of Property Sourcing - Meeting Current UK Standards.
But what is property sourcing?
In a nutshell, it is considered to be Estate Agency work as described in the Estate Agents Act 1979. However, estate agents and property sourcing agents operate differently, with estate agents representing sellers and obviously looking to get the best price for their client, whilst property sourcing agents on the other hand, primarily represent buyers (investors), making every effort to identify a property/project that aligns with what the investor is looking for.
There are National Minimum Standards, with over a dozen pieces of legislation and regulation that govern the property sourcing sector, which are updated or replaced at times, as well as the guidance and interpretation changing, so it's vitally important as a property sourcing agent the need to understand how they affect the sector on a day-to-day basis.
There are a number of stages to a property sourcing business operating compliantly, legally and professionally -Business Setup, Day To Day OperatingandStaying Up To Date, but even before that, a property sourcer needs to ensure they are aware of what full compliance looks like and be prepared to to put the leg work in to learn what is required, otherwise they are leaving themselves open to receiving a fine due to not meeting National Minimum Standards.
The National Association of Professional Sourcing Agents (NAPSA) Ltd was created by Tina to help support and guide property sourcing agents to operate legally, compliantly and professionally along with making the sector much safer for property investors wishing to work within it.
NAPSA works in partnership with both redress schemes: The Property Ombudsman (TPO) and the Property Redress Scheme (PRS), monitoring complaints in the property sourcing sector, as well as having regular conversations with National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team (NTSELAT) and the HMRC Anti Money Laundering (AML) Team.