Letting Fee Ban – An Update!

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The new letting fee ban has not only split opinion, but proved extremely controversial since it was mentioned in last years autumn statement. We now know more.

So, a complete blanket ban on letting fees? It has been initially met with a great deal of acceptance from tenants, blissfully unaware that it may actually cost them more in the long run.

Most agents are up in arms at the change, and a lot of Landlords are deciding whether or not to hang up their Landlording boots and sell up!

Just to go back a few steps, the government discussed a blanket ban on ALL fees to tenants and also limiting deposit amounts to 6 weeks for all tenancies

This affects the sector in a few ways, but most noticeably in that pets are more than likely to be refused, as a deposit is now limited to 6 weeks.  Secondly, an agent will now need to cover the loss of any fee charged to the tenant so will more than likely increase the cost to the Landlord.

They will, in turn, up the rent, so the tenant ends up paying either way!

The powers that be have finally realised this, so have put back any introduction of a letting fee ban until at least Spring 2019 and sent the proposal back to all-party communities and a local government select committee of MP’s for further scrutiny.

Gavin Barwell the former housing minister, who is now a special advisor to Teresa May, has called It a ‘bad idea’ which would cause rents to rise.

Shelter have been pushing for the ban of letting fees since 2013, but it is extremely naïve of Shelter and more-so of the government to assume that the banning of tenant fees is of direct benefit to the tenant.

 

I will again put my two pence worth into the argument, and say that the only way to satisfy all parties is to cap fees payable, to ensure a fair and transparent market for all tenants, and to ensure there are no more rent increases across the sector.  This also puts a stop to the unscrupulous agents that have made this type of legislation necessary.

What do you think??

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