THE scrapping of tenant fees in order to make renting more affordable has been welcomed by Oscars Sales and Lettings Agents as a ‘sensible decision’.
Oscars said the introduction of the Tenancy Fees Act, which came into force at the start of the month, paves the way for more people to access affordable accommodation and leads to a fairer system for non-home owners.
Michelle Bailey, Lettings Manager at the family-run agency, said: “Historically, tenants have faced large fees from some agencies when taking on a new property, with deposits up front and various associated administrative fees which were charged by some across the board.
“For some time we’ve had various properties that we’ve let without any administrative fees, which was a decision we took ourselves.
“The new legislation, which has come into force this week, means it’s now illegal for private landlords and lettings agents to charge certain fees and it is something we wholeheartedly back as it is a fairer system for all and makes it far easier for people to afford a rental property.
“It’s a sensible decision, particularly in austere times, and is a positive move for the rental industry as a whole as more people will be now be able to take that step towards renting their own home now, which might have been out of their budget previously.
“We have many private landlords who let properties with us and we are now helping all of our landlords to implement these new changes and are happy to advise anyone who is currently unsure of where they stand.“
The legislations changes;
1. The new rules haven't eliminated charges altogether, but the vast majority have now been banned.
2. A tenant now only has to pay a holding deposit of a maximum of one week’s rent which is then deducted from the rent or deposit upon move in. Deposits have been capped at 5 weeks rent.
3. Fees for credit checks, check-in charges, and referencing fees are now unlawful
4. Reasonable costs for changing locks etc can only be made, with evidence of cost to the landlord, to end inflated charges for repairs and replacements
5. Landlords and agents who breach the Act can receive a fine of £5,000 and civil penalties of up to £30,000
If you want to find out how much your property is worth, contact Oscars Estate Agents for a free, no-obligation valuation.
Please report any repairs to your rental property to 01482 446644 or complete our report a repair form and a member of our team will get back to you.
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