Who the National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team (NTSELAT) are, what we do.
Who we are
The National Trading Standards Estate and Letting Agency Team (NTSELAT) is responsible for:
- the regulation of estate agency work in the UK
- overseeing the enforcement of lettings agency work in England
We're a single point of contact for enforcement authorities and industry.
NTSELAT has officers appointed by:
- Powys County Council, as the lead enforcement authority under the Estate Agents Act 1979
- Bristol City Council, as the lead enforcement authority under the Tenant Fees Act 2019
The two enforcement authorities act as one team. They're authorised to carry out work in relation to both estate agency work and lettings.
This way, we:
- make the most of the resources of each lead enforcement authority
- complement the enforcement of lettings agency work in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales
Funding for the team is provided by a grant from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC). This is managed by the Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI), on behalf of National Trading Standards.
The funding is ring-fenced by the host lead enforcement authorities for the work of the team.
Oversight of the team is provided via the NTS Estate and Letting Agency Governance group. This includes officers from trading standards authorities and DLUHC officials.
Find more information on National Trading Standards, their work areas and teams.
Our pdf business plan for 2023 to 2024 (490 KB) shows our planned work.
- how our work fits in with the National Trading Standards' strategic priorities
- our accountability to the Secretary of State who creates the legislation and approves the funding
What we do
Our area of responsibility includes:
- oversight of how the relevant estate and letting agency legislation is working and is being enforced
- issuing prohibition and warning orders that concern whether a person is unfit to engage in estate agency work
- approval and oversight of the UK's consumer redress schemes, Ombudsmen, and Alternative Dispute Resolution entities in the estate agency sector
- publication of guidance and advice for the public, businesses and enforcement authorities on estate agency work in the UK and relevant letting agency work in England.
We're the lead enforcement authority for the Tenant Fees Act 2019, which only applies in England. Lettings legislation in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales is outside our area of responsibility.
However, malpractice or the law being broken can still be a "trigger" under the Estate Agents Act 1979. Therefore, we still want to be informed of any CPRs breaches by, for example, letting or property managers, in case it could trigger an investigation into their unfitness to engage in estate agency work.
Watch our short video on the work we do.
What we do not do
We do not:
- give specific, individual advice to consumers or businesses
- mediate or arbitrate in individual complaints
- award civil redress
- conduct routine investigations: these are the responsibility of local Trading Standards, Environmental Health or Housing teams. However, in certain circumstances we may investigate cases where a local authority is unable to do so