The letting fees ban was first announced by chancellor Philip Hammond in his November 2016 Autumn statement, with the draft legislation published at the end of last year. The new bill set out the government’s plan to ban letting fees for tenants and was built with the aim to help renters by bringing an end to costly upfront payments.
On 8th January 2018 a two-hour long session was held by Select Committee that oversees the newly renamed Department for Housing, Communicatees and Local Government. The committee discussed possible issues faced by the ban.
Whilst attempting to improve transparency, affordability and competition the looming legislation has been scrutinised for multiple issues including the possibility of increased rent and lowered property standards.
Many believe that landlords will be forced to increase the rental price of properties in their portfolio. This is due to the extra costs of running the tenancy as a result of the ban. The new law can’t prevent these increased rental prices and therefore leave tenants at risk.
Lowered Property Standards
Critics have suggested that the ban on fees is likely to be self-defeating. Lower fees will give lettings agents less incentives to help landlords run their properties professionally, resulting in reduced property standards.
With the ban on tenancy fees likely to come into force later this year it is more important than ever to set the standard at which the property should be maintained, and returned at the end of the tenancy.
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