HMRC Rules for Estate Agents
Estate agents must be registered with HMRC for anti-money laundering supervision and must meet the approval requirements covered under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017. HMRC guidance can be found here.
Any company or person who goes under a different title, for example, land agent, property consultant, property sourcer, land sourcer, property finder and so on, will be regarded as an estate agent by HMRC. Any such company or person who transacts business between buyers and sellers of land or property without registering with HMRC for anti-money laundering supervision is committing a criminal offence. This is also applicable if agents are dealing with buyers and/or sellers indirectly, for example, via other agents.
Identities of buyers and sellers must be verified. Company ID must be obtained by estate agents along with personal ID of certain key personnel. There are also requirements for individuals. HMRC ID requirements can be found here. We ask that buyers, sellers and agents that we deal with understand that we are obliged to seek this verification.
In addition to the above checks, there are also other things that we need to be aware of such as how developers will be funding developments, we need to know whether anybody that we deal with is a politically sensitive person and we also need to know about any beneficial owners of land or property for sale.
Agents should note that unless you are registered with HMRC for anti-money laundering supervision, we cannot transact business with you.
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