There are two types of business in the world of property sourcing: those that are compliant with the legislation and regulations affecting the industry, and those that aren’t.
It’s black and white. Laws often are. But of course, many like to find the grey areas to work in too.
But at Coronet Group, we like to play with a pretty straight bat. It comes from years of providing professional services to clients in architecture and marketing. We’re used to advising clients certain in the knowledge that we know the laws affecting them, from designing properties that meet building regulations to managing customer information that’s in line with the Data Protection Act.
As property sourcing professionals, we’re taking a pretty uncompromising approach to being compliant with the rules too.
What does this mean?
There are several laws affecting this industry, including:
The Estate Agents Act 1979
The Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Act 2007
The Data Protection Act 1998, and
UK Anti Money Laundering Legislation including Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and Money Laundering Regulations 2007.
There are a few more too, but for want of getting the point across, those should do the trick.
So why does this mean you need to provide your ID?
It comes down to the anti-money laundering legislation. By providing you with sourced or packaged deals, we’re providing you with a service in a regulated industry – property. This means we need to “detect and deter activities relating to money laundering or terrorist activity”.
In other words we must be able to prove:
Who our clients are
Where they live
If they're investing as a company, what company they work for and where it's based
The provenance of the funds they’re using to buy properties
We haven’t made these rules. But we’re registered with HMRC for money laundering so we don’t have a choice. We must ask you for more information – you can read more about it on HMRC’s website here.
So when we ask for your proof of identity that's why. We’re in the business of providing a legally compliant and professional service. That’s just how we’re wired.
But not only that, if we don’t, the implications are big – offences carry a maximum penalty of 14 years behind bars and or an unlimited fine. I’ll say that again for dramatic effect – 14 years behind bars and or an unlimited fine. If we ask for your ID, it’s not because we’re nosy, we’re just being compliant with the law and trying to avoid doing some pretty serious porridge.
If you’re working with other property sourcers, you might want to ask what their anti-money laundering policies and procedures are. If they don’t have any, what else aren’t they doing too? Perhaps they aren’t registered with a property redress scheme, or maybe they aren’t keeping your data safe and secure.
Get in touch with me here if you want to find out more about our compliance procedures or how we can find property for you in a legally compliant way.