The Government has just announced plans to force letting agents to publish the fees they charge tenants, both on their websites and prominently in their offices and branches.
In a move designed to take the wind out of Labour’s proposal to ban the fees charged to tenants, Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg revealed that the measures would help renters to shop around and get the best deal when moving home. He also warned that any ban on letting agent fees would probably increase rents in the long run and have a negative impact on the rental property market.
Housing Minister Kris Hopkins added that, “Short-term gimmicks like trying to ban any fee to tenants means higher rents by the back door. Excessive state regulation and waging war on the private rented sector would also destroy investment in new housing, push up prices and make it far harder for people to find a flat or house to rent.”
The announcement came just hours before Labour called a vote in the House of Commons, in a bid to force Conservative and Liberal Democrat MPs to back their plans to ban the fees. Instead, the government plans to push forward its own amendment to the bill.
This is all academic as far as Walton & Allen are concerned. We have never charged a penny to prospective new tenants! Not a penny for admin fees, referencing or insurances.
That’s why we would encourage tenants to shop around. Because we usually find that they prefer to rent our properties, rather than those offered by letting agents charging unjustified fees.
So this new legislation means no change whatsoever for us. It also means that we’re still the best place for tenants to come first when looking for rented property.