HMRC’s updated listing of businesses that have been penalised for breaching Anti-Money Laundering Regulations shows that no estate agents were fined in the six months to April this year.
But conversations we have had in recent days suggest that this could be the calm before the storm.
As we have previously reported, for the period between August 2018 and the end of last October, HMRC is continuing to list penalties received by five firms, of which three were estate agents and two of those were online firms.
Countrywide was fined £215,000, Tepilo (which went into administration last December) was fined £52,691, and Settled was fined £3,245.
HMRC revealed the Countrywide fine in March, at the same time as announcing a major crackdown on estate agents, with HMRC officers visiting 50 estate agents across England that were suspected of trading without being registered for AML supervision.
Last month Purplebricks revealed in its latest annual report that it is in discussion with HMRC over its AML procedures, warning that there could be a potential cost.