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Estate Agents Signs

Page history last edited by Hugh 14 years, 4 months ago

The unsightly and unsafe nature of estate agents' boards has long been as issue of convern for Harringay's residents.


The Law


Following a request from Harringay Online, the law is nicely summed up on Haringey Council's Website:


Number of Estate Agent boards are permitted to be displayed on a property

The law states that not more than one advertisement, consisting of a single board or two joined boards is permitted. If more than one board is displayed then the first board to be displayed will be deemed as the lawful advertisement.


What can be displayed on a Estate Agent Board

No advertisement may be displayed indicating that the land or premises has been sold or let, unless an additional advertisement or a statement that a sale or let has been agreed or is subject to contract.



Adverts relating to residential use or development are permitted to be 0.5 square metres or 2 square metres fro commercial propoerties.If two boards are joined up then an aggregate of 2.3 square metres is permitted

  • Distance the advertisement project from the building

The maximum projection from a building face is 1 metre

  • Permitted height of signs 

No part of the advertisement should be higher above the ground than 4.6 Metres, or 3.6 metres in an area of special control


Length of time a sign can be displayed

The advertisement must be removed within fourteen days after completion of a sale or the grant of tenancy.


Illumination restrictions

Estate Agent advertisements are not permitted to be illuminated.



Penalties for Infringement


Apparently, the council can fine advertisers who break the law (though this can be a lengthy legal process and fines can end up being small) or they can remove them and charge advertisers the cost of their removal.



Further Sources on the Law


The relevant legislation can be found in the Town & Country Planning Act, 1992 (and subsequently amended). I did a trawl of the web and found the following (2 - 6 are attached as files - 3 is the max that can be attached per post. So 3 here and 2 to my next post ):

1. Link to 1992 T&C Planning Act

2. 2007 control of advertising regs

3. Explanatory note for 2007 regs

4. 2007 Guidance to LAs on outdoor advertising

5. 2007 Guidance to advertisers on outdoor advertising.

6. Report from Elmbridge Council



Guidance from Ombudsman of Estate Agents


Here are the rules and regulations for the use of LET BY signs form the Ombudsman of Estate Agents.


Letting Boards

4b You can only erect a To Let (or similar) board with the client’s specific permission. When you put up a board you must comply with the Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisements) Regulations 1992 as amended; or in Scotland, the Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisement) Regulations 1990. You must accept liability for any claim arising under these Regulations in connection with the board, unless the action arises as a result of a further board being put up by another person. Any board should be removed promptly where you are no longer instructed, or, within 14 days from a property which has been let.


4c If your board relates to only part of a building (for example a flat) it should indicate the part (or flat or unit) of the building to which it relates.


4d You must not replace another agent’s board with your own, hide it or remove it from a property. Where appropriate you should ask the client to make arrangements with the other agent for the prompt removal of any existing board.


4e You must not erect a To Let board or similar on a property that you have not been instructed to let.



Action by Local Residents Groups


The Gardens Residents' Association have addressed this issue in the past I'm told by ANdy Newman, once in 2005 and another batch in 2007 via The Green Lanes Strategy Group.


I'm not sure of any details, but I'm sure the Ladder Community Safety Partnership (LCSP) has picked up on the issue too.


See following section for action by Harringay Ooline.



Haringey Council


Action taken prior to September 2008


Little detail. Some detail in preceding section.


Action taken by the Council September 2008 onwards

September 2008


Harringay Online met with Brain Ellick from Haringey's Street Enforcement team. The key points arising from the meeting were:


  • In August 2008 Brian Ellick and his team undertook a detailed survey of signs in Green Lanes and the surrounding roads in Harringay.
  • From September 2008 there is a plan to remove all illegal signs in conunction with planning enforcement, health & safety & trading standards.
  • Initially the approach will be by seeking the companies co-operation.
  • Failing that enforcement action will be taken



October 2008


Key points from an update phone call between Harringay Online and Brian Ellick on 29th October 2008.


1. Brian's plan was to start with the worst offender - Paul Simon.

2. Haringey's survey identified 43 illegal signs by Paul Simon on the Ladder & GL (the pilot area).

3. PS were sent a notice requiring their removal.

4. 27 signs were removed. PS claim that the remainder are legal.

5. Brian has asked PS to supply evidence to substantiate this claim.

6. We have agreed to speak again in one month. During that period Brian has said he will roll out the action to the other offending estate agents. By the end of the period he will also know whether PS have come back to him with evidence to support their claims of legality and will be in a position to determine whether to take legal action.

March 2009


Key points from an update phone call between Harringay Online and Brian Ellick on 5th March 2009.


1. To date the main focus has been on Paul Simon who had been perceived as the worst offender.

2. Apparently 70% of PS's illegal signs are now gone.

3. Now he will start focussing on the other agents and he "hopes" to get enforcement letters out in the next few weeks.

4. Asked if he planned to meet with these other agents, he said that "I might/I hope to". Asked if he thought this was a key and very important part of the process, he replied "Absolutely".


Council Contacts


Brian Ellick

Interim Team Leader

Street Enforcement Wardens

Environmental Crime Group

London Borough of Haringey

020 8489 8237


His boss is:

Rob Curtis


Environmental Crime Group

London Borough of Haringey

020 8489 5283



And their boss is:

Robin Payne

Assistant Director Enforcement

020 8489 5513


(Andy Newman at the GRA says of Robin "Robin is great").


And at teh top of the tree of council staff is:

Niall Bolger

Director of Urban Environment


The council cabinet member is St Ann's Councillor:

Nilgun Canver





Other Bodies


Consumer Direct


I have spoken on the phone with Consumer Direct who are part of Haringey trading Standards. I have lodged a complaint about Paul Simon, Alpha Let, Hane, Golds and The Property Company.  You can contact Consumer Direct by phone and use the ringback service if you do not want to hold for hours 08454 04 05 06




In MAy 2008, the Ombudsman of Estate Agents advised the following:


It may be that the Branch Manager or one of the Negotiators of your local estate agents is a member of one of the following organisations, and you may wish to consider contacting them:

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors

Surveyor Court

Westwood Way



Association of Residential Letting Agents

ARLA Administration

Arbon House

6 Tournament Court

Edgehill Drive


CV34 6LG Tel: 01926 496800

Email: info@arla.co.uk

The National Approved Letting Scheme

Tavistock House

5 Rodney Road


GL50 1HX Tel: 01242 581712

Email: info@nalscheme.co.uk


Estate Agents in Harringay


In a May 2008 disciussion on Harringay Online, Ben Identified the following estate agents as the main offenders:


Paul Simon Estate Agents

37-38, Grand Parade, Green Lanes, London, N4 1AQ

Tel: 020 8800 1155

Hane Estate Agents

555, Green Lanes, London, N8 0RL

Tel: 020 8342 9858

Golds Estate Agents

439, Green Lanes,



N4 1HA

Tel: 020 8348 5533

Alpha Let

371 Green Lanes, Harringay

London, N4 1DY

020 8809 6144

The Property Company

143 Tottenham lane, Crouch End London N8 9BJ

Tel: 0208 348 8833 Fax: 0208 348 2525



Discussions on Harringay Online about the Issue


Getting it off my chest about Green Lanes signage clutter!, November 2007

Estate agent signs on buildings, March 2008

Estate Agents Signs, May 2008

Get Paul Simon's horrible signs off the front of Harringay's listed building, September 2009





Estate agent ‘Asbos’ for illegal signs, story in the Evening Standard about how Harrow Council are dealing with the issue, March 2009

BBC News Story on Brighton Council's Ban on city centre estate agents' boards, 11 September 2008.

Press release from Ealing Council on action they took on the issue, October 2007


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