What We Do

Training for Professionals is the largest provider of lettings legislation training across England and Wales. We aim to help and support Letting Agents and Landlords alike with advice on how best to navigate the constantly changing property management landscape. Whether it’s through training courses, consultancy, or model documentation, TFP aims to make property management safer, easier, more compliant and cost effective. Want to know more? 

News

  • COVID-19

    We plan to add here updates about the COVID-19 and
    how agents can mange and survive it. Check back daily
    to see the latest. We will put the latest news at the top
    of this thread to make it easy to find.

    30/3/20
    1050
    I thought it might be useful to bring all the COVID-19
    links together. So here the relevant ones are:
    Guidance for landlords and tenants
    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/876500/Consolidated_Landlord_and_Tenant_Guidance_COVID_and_the_PRS_v4.2.pdf

    Main Coronavirus page
    https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

    Support for businesses
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19

    Guidance on claiming Universal Credit
    https://www.gov.uk/how-to-claim-universal-credit

    Guidance to the courts on prioritising applications to adjourn
    https://www.judiciary.uk/announcements/coronavirus-covid-19-message-from-the-lord-chief-justice-to-judges-in-the-civil-and-family-courts/

    Technical guidance on possessions for landlord (this 
    contains a few errors so be careful)
    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/876502/Technical_Guidance_COVID_19_PRS_v3.pdf

    General guidance for landlords and tenants
    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/876500/Consolidated_Landlord_and_Tenant_Guidance_COVID_and_the_PRS_v4.2.pdf

    Enforcement guidance for local authorities
    https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/876501/Local_authority_rented_property_COVID_enforcement_guidance_v2.2.pdf

    Further guidance on repairs and property visits
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close-guidance#work-carried-out-in-peoples-homes

    Stay at home guidance
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people/guidance-on-social-distancing-for-everyone-in-the-uk-and-protecting-older-people-and-vulnerable-adults

    Guidance on cleaning the home to avoid contamination
    useful for contractor visits for cleaning before and after
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-decontamination-in-non-healthcare-settings

    Guidance on  shared accommodation and possible infection
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

    Gas Safe Register advice 
    https://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/help-and-advice/covid-19-advice-and-guidance/

    Guidance on moving home
    https://www.gov.uk/guidance/government-advice-on-home-moving-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak

    Guidance on self isolation
    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

    0903
    Welcome to week two of COVID-19 lockdown. Over the
    weekend MHCLG put out another guide for landlords and
    tenants. It can be found here https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/876500/Consolidated_Landlord_and_Tenant_Guidance_COVID_and_the_PRS_v4.2.pdf
    Usefully it makes it clear that tenants should expect to
    pay their rent and to utilise support available to do that.
    It say local authorities should adjust their enforcement 
    due to the limited ability of landlords to do works. It says
    where safe and reasonable the tenant should allow 
    contractors access to inspect or remedy urgent health and
    safety issues. They include a non exhaustive list including
    roof leaking, boiler broken, no washing or toilet, fridge or
    washing machine broken, security issues and equipment
    relied on by a disabled person. This is really helpful and
    the link could be emailed to tenants.
    Reassuringly the guidance makes it clear that if the landlord
    has taken all reasonable steps to comply they will not be 
    considered in breach (bottom of page 19). Keep a log of
    all activities to prove reasonability.


    29/3/20
    1115
    The Welsh Government have issues their own COVID-19
    lockdown advice. Ti can be found here https://gov.wales/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-landlords-and-managing-agents-in-the-private-rented-sector-html


    28/3/20
    1717
    Yesterday a new Practice Direction 51Z for the Civil 
    Procedure Rules (CPR) was issued. It suspends all Part
    55 possession claims and enforcement. Part 55 is the 
    part landlords use for possession under section 8 and
    section 21. This applies to enforcement (bailiffs) as 
    well as current and new court cases. There is a 90 day
    suspension from the 27 March. Strangely Practice
    Direction says it lasts till 30 October, one month after
    the change to the section 21 notices, but presumably as
    the suspension is 90 days from the 27 March the October
    date is only relevant if they decide to extend the 90 days.



    27/3/20
    1613
    The world moves fast, if not backward! New movement
    restriction legislation has been passed. It can be found
    here. http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/350/introduction/made

    Of note is regulation 6 (2)(L) which explains the reasons people
    are allowed out of the house including the "moving house
    where reasonably necessary". This is not defined but is the
    law (note this is law not advice).

    Earlier in (2)(a) leaving the house for essential maintenance
    and upkeep is allowed. and (f) allows trades people to travel
    to jobs "where it is not possible" for that person to work
    from home.

    Schedule 2 lists business that must, by law, close. However
    Letting agents are not listed but any responsible agent will
    minimise any such office activity, especially if it involve staff
    and public transport

    Interesting these regulation were made at 1300, were laid
    before Parliament at 1430 and became law at 1300 (before
    Parliament!)

    On a lighter note, if you have not seen this it is genius
    and worth sharing https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8KPbJ0-DxTc 

    Enjoy and have a safe weekend


    0810
    The court service have suspended all housing possession
    cases. This will include all cases where notice has already
    been served, expired and a claim has already been lodged
    with the court. Full details are here https://www.gov.uk/guidance/government-support-available-for-landlords-and-renters-reflecting-the-current-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak

    0740
    The government have issued clarified guidance about
    maintenance workers effecting repairs.It can be found
    here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close/further-businesses-and-premises-to-close-guidance Essentially it says the work is allowed if it is
    a direct risk to the safety of the household. This will
    obviously include doing the gas safety checks. They
    should not do worksif the household are self-isolating,
    shielding or sick unless it is of an emergency nature
    (gas leak for example). Shielding is where someone
    with a vulnerability lives and is avoid all contact, for
    example they are elderly with a chronic lung condition.

    The engineer should not do any work if they are showing
    any symptoms, however mild. Even if work is done, the
    social distancing should be maintained with the residents
    staying well away from the contractor and both parties
    ensuring cleanliness of the site where the work is being
    undertaken before and after the works.

    Guidance was also issued about moving house. Essentially
    the message is avoid  moving if possible and only move
    where it is essential. The full guidance can be found here
    https://www.gov.uk/guidance/government-advice-on-home-moving-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak 

    If you do have to have a move then social distancing
    rules should be maintained as far as possible.

    In both of these cases this is very much the advice we have
    been giving all week. Avoid where possible, Be careful and
    keep your distance, Complete only if necessary, ABC!


    26/3/20
    1717
    Without going into the technicalities of why, the Coronavirus Act means that even though have to serve 3 months' notice under section 21, but the normal notice (now three months) still only remains valid for 6 months giving you one month less to take court action after expiry of the notice. A small trap for the unwary.

    1615
    We have just uploaded the latest version COVID-19 documents to the account of subscribers to the Tenancy Agreement, Management Forms, the Support Pack or who attended Wednesday's paid for COVID-19 webinar. The changes are in the documents now call R2-1. There is a new "Agreement to Lease" Document for England that reflects the fact we may not be able to d the move in due to COVID-19 lockdown. We are working on a version for Wales as the Welsh version includes the specified information. We will upload it as soon as possible for clients in Wales. We have also edited the information to Landlords, specifically to ask them not to agree rent deferment without talking to us as it could jeopardise things like rent guarantee insurance. We have also updated the information for agents to explain the section 21 "non changes" explained below.


    1540
    We have decided that we will use this space to tell you about updated documents too. Therefore, while we are in a state of rapid change (documents changing daily) we will not email out telling you documents have been updated but we will log them here.

    We are getting a lot of calls about "new section 21 notices". As below there is no new notice and secondly the courts are not going to give you possession anyway! Please read the post below to explain why it is not a new notice.

    0900 amended 1540
    The Coronavirus Act 2020 received Royal Assent last night. You can find the act here (Beware it is 358 pages so a long read!). Section 81 provides protection for residential tenancies though the implementation of Schedule 29.

    Please read carefully paragraph 6 and 7 of Schedule 29. IT DOES NOT say that the prescribed forms have been changed. It says the forms are "to be read" as if the references are to three months. We stress this as MHCLG have produce revised versions of their forms 3 and 6A (more later) on the MHCLG web site that no longer match the versions in the legislation. Our advice is stick to the forms we provide as this is what the legislation says the form should say. To show what a mess has been made, they uploaded the revised form 6A into the Form 6. This was amended about 10 o'clock this morning. The new form also makes reference to commencement 27 March 2020 (tomorrow as I write this) when it is already in force! (should that be "farce"?) (This has also now been corrected).

    The actual wording of the relevant paragraph for the section 21 notice (para 12(2), 11 is the section 8 notice for Wales as there is no prescribed form for section 21 in Wales) says:

    (2)The Schedule to the Assured Tenancies and Agricultural Occupancies (Forms) (England)
    Regulations 2015  is to be read, in relation to notices given under section 21(1) or (4) of the Housing Act
    1988 during the relevant period, as if in Form 6A (notice seeking possession of a property let on an
    assured shorthold tenancy)—

    (a)in the section headed “What to do if this notice is served on you”, in the second paragraph—

    (i)for “two months’” there were substituted “three months’”, and

    (ii)the words “if you pay rent quarterly, you must be given at least three months’ notice, or,” were omitted, and

    (b)in paragraph 3, for “two months’” there were substituted “three months’”.


    (Apologies for the formatting, copied and pasted). Note the  3 phrases in red text. 1)"is to be read" It does not say the regulations are changed, it says you read it in a certain way. 2) "As if in Form 6A" again is does not say it is change and indeed if it was changed you would not need to read it "as if" as it would be actually changed. 3) Remember we are "read this ", "as if" the 2 months were substituted for three months. Again not changing it but telling you how to read it. The reason is obvious and simple. this change is for 6 months till 30 September 2020. If they changed the prescribed form they would have to change it back again. This way they don't have to make any changes (now or later) and it is just read in a special way. 



    25/3/20
    Today the Government have made two relevant announcements.

    Firstly, they have confirmed that the business rate relief announced for restaurants etc will apply to estate and letting agents for 2021. This is very welcome news.

    The full article can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/news/covid-19-estate-agents-lettings-agencies-and-bingo-halls-to-pay-no-business-rates-this-coming-financial-year.

    Secondly, the Government have effectively confirmed the advice we have been giving on moving house. It should be  avoided if possible and if it does need to take place it should be undertaken with the "social distancing" rules. This will require a little creativity but it is not beyond the wit of man to come up with ideas.

  • Money Laundering Day

    Today is the day the 5th Money Laundering Directive required individual nations to have implemented the 5th Money Laundering Directive. European directives require legislation in each nation whereas European regulations do not, they are directly enforceable. And don't think that in leaving the EU we won't still comply. Firstly because in order to work with Europe they will require the same sort of standards but also because it was the uK who was pressing for better money laundering rules in the first place!

    However, in reality, for the lettings market this really is a "non event". Don't be fooled by reading about letting agents have to register for money laundering and do due diligence on their clients. Indeed this is what the law says, but you have to read the definition of letting agent and this is where it only applies to a letting agent  who is letting a property in excess of 10,000 Euros a month (about £8,300). This will therefore be a tiny percentage of properties and agents. Searching Rightmove for the whole London area and properties over £8,000 a month today (10/1/20) it finds 2,797 properties listed over £8,000 a month. Outside London you find far fewer. The point is that you are not considered to be a letting agent if the rent is under 10,000 Euro.
    For some agents they may already be registered for sales and any money laundering compliance will be a small step. For the vast majority they will not need to do anything different as they simply don't rent any properties over the 10,000 Euro threshold.

  • Christmas Helpline Hours

    Please note that the Helpline will be open for all normal working hours over the 

    Christmas and New Year break (bank holidays we will be closed)

    Helpline Opening Hours

    9.00am to 5.00pm on the following dates:

    23rd December

    24th December

    27th December

    30th December

    31st December



    We would like to take this opportunity to wish you a very 

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Twitter feed

Excellent course, very applicable and informative. Enjoyed it.
— Jeremy Scully, Prestige Lettings, CARDIFF, Legal Update Wales 2020/CF/Feb20
Very important information which is needed by every agent and landlord.
— Daniel Peter, Alliance Homes (UK) Ltd, LONDON, Intermediate Law for Lettings/SE/Nov19
The course is extremely helpful. Not only do you gain knowledge but courses such as these are an open platform in having your own questions addressed & answered.
— Olivia Whale, Tawe Properties Ltd, LLANELLI, Legal Update 2019 Wales/SW/Jul19
Very informative, very useful day. Well presented.
— Jennifer Syms, Award Property Management, CAMBRIDGE, Basic Law for Lettings/CA/Oct19
The course was well structured, clear and concise and expertly delivered.
— Andrew Ward, Award Property Management, CAMBRIDGE, Basic Law for Lettings/CA/Oct19
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