Quality standards for leasehold property management
ARMA accreditation is a milestone for consumer protection in the residential leasehold management sector.
What is ARMA Accreditation?
ARMA lobbied the Government for regulation to raise professional standards in the leasehold sector for over 10 years. In 2010, after the Coalition announced it did not intend to proceed with statutory regulation, ARMA commissioned an independent review to look at how best we could establish our own self-regulatory regime in the absence of statutory regulation.
From this, we introduced a new self-regulatory regime for our members in 2014 known as ARMA-Q. This aimed to raise standards and the quality of service across the residential leasehold management sector and by 2016 all ARMA members had met the new regime. ARMA-Q has now evolved into what it is known simply as 'ARMA Accreditation'. This places consumers at its heart and requires all members to meet a new Consumer Charter and Standards. There are 180 Standards and these have been developed specifically for managing agents.
Essentially, we're boosting the standards that apply to ARMA members. Managing agents who belong to ARMA have to comply with the highest possible bespoke standards. So by choosing an ARMA member you get higher standards, greater confidence and more openness.
Why do we have these standards?
The leasehold management sector is unregulated so anyone can set up as a managing agent and start trading. This has led to inconsistencies in service levels and has dented consumer confidence in managing agents. The truth is that there are a lot of good managing agents out there and we want to make them stand out.
We remain optimistic that statutory regulation for all managing agents will be the long-term solution. In the meantime, ARMA Accrediation will benefit anyone using an ARMA member and help raise standards across the industry as a whole.
How will ARMA accreditation affect you?
ARMA Accreditation is designed to protect consumers in all areas of leasehold management. You will be able to measure the performance of your managing agent against a prescribed set of Standards.
So for example, if you're not happy with the level of service you are receiving, you will be able to call your managing agent to account against the appropriate ARMA Standard.
Membership of ARMA is voluntary. So if your managing agent is signed up to ARMA, they are showing a clear commitment to offering the best customer service when managing your property.