Government Debate on Lettings Fees Ban

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) has submitted evidence ahead of a debate on the proposed letting agent fee ban in Westminster Hall on Wednesday 6th September.

To re-cap, the proposed ban will mean that tenants will no longer have to pay any fees at all – only one week’s rent for a holding deposit and one month’s rent for the deposit.

Announced in last year’s Autumn Statement, the Government said the proposed ban will “stop hidden charges and end tenants being hit by costly upfront payments that can be difficult to afford”. It also says that the move will bring an end to the small minority of agents exploiting their role between renters and landlords, banish unfair charges and stop those agents that double charge tenants and property owners for the same service.

A Government Consultation in June this year had more than 4,700 responses. However, just days later the Chancellor announced that he would be pressing ahead with the ban although it is unlikely he would have had the time to respond to the considerable response in that timeframe.

In the RLA’s official response they said that with some agents picking up as much as 30% of their income through tenant fees, they will have no choice but to pass those fees onto landlords.

RLA Chairman, Alan Ward, says “The Minister must review the plans in the context of other financial pressures, such as tax changes, improvements to energy performance and the threats from Universal Credit changes.”

Conservative MP, Kevin Hollinrake is hosting the debate on Wednesday at Westminster Hall between 9am and 11am. Debates at Westminster Hall are open to the public.

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