WEEKLY NEWS ROUNDUP – 01/10/2021
A roundup of the week’s top property and proptech news stories in partnership with Proptech-X
- Mark Hayward to retire from Propertymark
- Treasury slow-rolls digital tax returns for landlords
- New tech from Tenancy Deposit Scheme cuts admin time for agents
- Coadjute to launch UK’s first mortgage stablecoin in with blockchain provider R3
Mark Hayward to retire from Propertymark
Formally the CEO and then holding the title of Chief Policy Advisor, Mark Hayward is to leave Propertymark at the end of the year. Propertymark has in the past eight years gone through a number of changes and has seen a concentration of power and an alignment of organisations with it during that time.
At present with Nathan Emerson as CEO, Propertymark is going through a golden age of listening and putting the grassroots membership front and centre. It will be interesting to see who fills Mr Hayward’s shoes. My hope is that it is a less stale, male and pale person, maybe a person who is a generation younger and perhaps of a different gender would help get a balanced view of what modern agency is going to be in the 2030s.
Treasury slow-rolls digital tax returns for landlords
In what had been heralded as a wonderful way to ensure that an estimated 800,000 “accidental landlords” actually declare to HMRC they are landlords, it would now seem the Treasury has gone soft on the idea.
At present, landlords whose personal tax liability is above the current threshold have to ensure they put in a tax return to HMRC. With the advent of making tax digital, it was going to be the case that in January 2023, all landlords would need to digitally file an assessment four times a year outlining income and expenditure, as well as their annual tax return, as before.
This no doubt would have generated extra income and made the entire process of collecting tax – and chasing down rogue landlords who perhaps owed tax – a little easier.
Now we learn that the pandemic has changed the timetable, though I can’t in any way see why there is a connection between the pandemic and collecting the correct amount of tax.
The Financial Secretary to the Treasury, MP Lucy Frazer, has gone on record to explain that after consultation with various stakeholders in the lettings vertical, saying: “as we emerge from the pandemic, it’s critical that everyone has enough time to prepare for the change, which is why we’re giving people an extra year to do so.”
To me, it sounds like a counterintuitive step. Surely getting landlords to record everything digitally and presenting it to the HMRC is just the same as any other person or company making their business details transparent.
Why should there be yet another year to get everything sorted? It’s just making an analogue system digital, which usually after some training and adoption means much more efficient businesses.
New tech from Tenancy Deposit Scheme cuts admin time for agents
Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) has released the latest update of its newly launched API solution to help lettings agents streamline their deposit protection process.
The PropTech API, which has been developed by TDS’ in-house technology team, connects an agent’s lettings software/CRM tool with the TDS database to automatically transfer the tenancy deposit registration details at the click of a button. Up to now, this has always been a manual exercise and often results in duplicate efforts where agents are entering the same information into multiple platforms. The new API turns this into an automated process which removes the inputting task and saves hours of administration in the process.
“Tenancy deposits play a small but an important part in an agent’s list of responsibilities and should therefore be as easy as possible to manage,’ commented Debbie Davies, Head of Sales and Client Success at TDS. “After listening to our customers’ needs, our in-house technology team developed the API to speed up the tenancy deposit process and save agents’ time. Our aim is to continue making deposit management as fast and simple as possible.”
TDS currently protects 4.2 million deposits for thousands of letting agents throughout the UK. The user database is vast, which is why CRM providers have already started integrating with TDS using the API.
The integration streamlines the deposit protection journey and improve user satisfaction. As a feature that agents have been calling for, TDS is urging letting agents to spread the word to their CRM software suppliers and ask for the feature to be added to their platform.
“Letting agents are encouraged to bring their CRM partners onboard to integrate with the TDS API,” added Debbie. “We have a strong incentive and promotional programme for all CRM software providers who integrate, to help them access and retain users in the property sector. It’s a win-win for letting agents and CRM providers.”
TDS expects the solution to be picked up by more CRM software providers throughout 2021 and into 2022 as agents continue to look for further efficiencies and cost savings. Fraser Sutherland, Managing Director of SME Professional, is delighted to announce their partnership with TDS, “Our partnership with TDS is taking the next step with our insured-scheme API integration. As a leading provider of property management systems, we believe that software integrations are key to offering our clients simple, reliable and time-saving transfer of information between platforms.”
The TDS technology team has made the integration incredibly straightforward with a simple 4-step set-up process for CRM providers. “If something can be made easier or more efficient in tenancy deposits, we’ll find it – and develop it. This API is just one example of how our technology team continues to push tenancy deposit management and automation forward.”
The TDS API now features a new update that allows agents to search their TDS account to check if properties and/or landlords have already been added to their database. This new function prevents duplications and further streamlines the deposit registration process by ensuring agents only add new details.
CRM providers and letting agents can learn more about how the API works and integrates here: TDS CRM API
Coadjute to launch UK’s first mortgage stablecoin in with blockchain provider R3
Coadjute, which seeks to pave the way for full digital completion of property sales by increasing transparency and efficiency, reducing fraud, and transforming the customer experience, made the following announcement through a press release.
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.