BREAKING NEWS – 5 top stories 13/01/2021
ANTI MONEY LAUNDERING – HMRC SCORES ON THE DOORS
Annually HMRC posts on their government website those who have been shown to have breached the AML regulatory framework. This year only a tiny handful of agents were on the naughty list, which given the amount of transactions that take place, 1.1M completions, hundreds of thousands of lets is itself amazing.
Add in the other related fields where AML compliance touches real estate and perhaps the industry should be held up as the poster boy. Or is it the case that policing of AML by external bodies is minimal. Either way, at least Countrywide will be happy this year as they did not get a 215K fine this time around.
ONLINE AGENT DOORSTEPS – ANNOUNCEMENT IMMINENT
Akshay Rupernalia the co-founder of online agent Doorsteps was asked to comment on the financial wellbeing of his economy brand where as he put it, ‘We imagined a world, where you could sell your house for less than a hundred pounds and you wouldn’t have to leave your home.’
The big question is, has the 1.4M of crowd funded cash, been burnt through to a dangerously low level? Mr Rupernalia has promised an announcement of some kind in the coming weeks, following recent publication of the annual accounts. Given the long line of failed onliners I am hopeful that it is good news on the horizon for Akshay.
CALL FOR (UPRNS) UNIQUE PROPERTY REFERENCE NUMBERING TO GET GOVT NOD
In what is hardly news, a collaborative group have written to the housing secretary to push forward with the systems adoption, which would not only identify a property in a distinct geospatial manner, but it could also map together any matters that pertain to the said property, an excellent way to speed the sale of this asset for example.
Though widescale adoption of the Unique Property Reference Number system will speed digitisation, enhance clarity, and make the identification of the property asset far easier. If the government does take to the idea, the danger is who becomes it’s gatekeeper and would it involve a fee?
WILL AGENTS STILL BE ALLOWED TO DO PHYSICAL VIEWINGS?
Industry insiders are getting strong sentiment that a decision over whether agencies and indeed the physical moving of buyers/vendors and tenants may have to be curtailed as the Pandemic rages on. Pushing aside the political manoeuvring on the topic, there is also a growing swell of agents who are rightly fearful of doing live viewings. Expect a decision on this matter soon.
2021 PROPERTYY CONFERENCE SEASON ON HOLD
The first fresh casualty of the 2021 conference season has been announced with the unfortunate postponement, but no-one can tell when, of the ARLA Propertymark bash and accompanying exhibition.
This is unfortunate on all levels, both for exhibitors, those needing new solutions, and of course the loss of a big networking event as well as hearing what is going on.
If you have a view – please let us all know by emailing me at [email protected] – Andrew Stanton Executive Editor – moving property and proptech forward.