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Press release

6 FEB 2018

Ombudsman Services announces withdrawal from the surveyor market

Ombudsman Services has announced that it will no longer be offering alternative dispute resolution (ADR) services with regard to building surveyors, managing agents, estate agents and letting agents, and their services, from 6 August 2018.

RICS has approved several ADR providers that meet our requirements for consumer dispute resolution. These ADR providers resolve consumer complaints against RICS regulated firms without the costs associated with seeking redress from the courts.

Ombudsman Services is the largest of these organisations and is currently the only provider covering the full range of surveying activities. We are therefore working closely with other approved providers to ensure suitable and sustainable arrangements are in place for firms and consumers going forward. There is no change until the 6 August 2018 and we will keep firms and consumers updated on our future arrangements.

We are disappointed that Ombudsman Services are removing themselves from property. While we agree with them that the UK residential property market is fragmented, it is important to ensure that consumers continue to have access to redress during a transition to any potential future system.

As the leading body for setting and enforcing standards in property and the built environment, we are working with government, and redress providers, to ensure that any future regulatory regime for the UK residential sector is fit for purpose, and that suitable access to redress is available in the meantime.

Jonathan Gorvin, Head of Regulatory Policy and Development