EYE NEWSFLASH: Tenancy fees ban to come in on June 1 this year

The Government confirmed this afternoon that the Tenant Fees Bill will come into force on June 1 this year.

The announcement was made by Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth, the Government’s housing spokesperson in the House of Lords during the Bill’s Third Reading.

He said: “It has been clear throughout that this is a Bill that will introduce important changes for the private rented sector.

“It is in all our interest to introduce this introduction as soon as possible.

“Implementation is subject to the parliamentary timetables and amendments need to be considered in the other place (the House of Commons.)

“We need to enable agents and landlords following Royal Assent to become compliant but we intend for the provisions to come into force on June 1st 2019.

“This would mean the ban on lettings fees would apply to all tenancies signed after this date.”

Lord Bourne also introduced an amendment – backed by peers – that would let enforcement authorities set a date for when interest could be paid from holding deposits that had not been returned in a required period. This would apply to interest earned up to a day before the required period, he said.

Peers backed the Bill, which passed its Third Reading, and praised the work of everyone who worked on it.

Lord Kennedy said the Bill “leaves this House in a better position than when it arrived.”

Baroness Grender welcomed the Bill and said she was looking forward to the Government releasing guidance on how landlords and lettings agents could charge for damages.

Responding on this, Lord Bourne said allowing landlords to charge for damages “wouldn’t be a back door to default fees.”

He added that there is plenty of case law that damages are not meant to do anything more than put an innocent party back to their original place.

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  1. Lil Bandit

    This will separate the wheat from the chaff!

  2. ArthurHouse02

    Nothing like choosing a good day to bury some news

  3. Andy Halstead

    Very bad news, however we have been planning for this since Autumn 2016. Poor legislation, ill-conceived and not thought through, but there we go……… 
    There will be winners and losers, professional agents with the right support will get through this, ultimately with stronger, bigger businesses. 2019 is going to be one of the toughest on record, let’s collaborate and win the war. There is a huge difference between cost and value, between a customer experience and customer service. Value and service every time for me. Bring it on!

    1. KeysafeTenantVetting

      Wise words Andy.

    2. Robert May

      I suspect hardest hit will be some of the service suppliers who have failed to maintain the sort of goodwill with others that would have allowed collaboration. They will find themselves vulnerable and unable to properly help their agents through what is headed our way.

  4. dave_d

    Fully prepared – we’ve been improving our service for the last 2 years and now offer the most comprehensive management package in the area by far utilising technology to give landlords instant access to data. Just ploughed a load of money into a new website which will again further improve our service.

  5. LeeHardy45

    Not ready, not even close

    The next few months could be interesting…

  6. StayGreen

    Fail to prepare, prepare to fail springs to mind for some agents.

  7. hill70

    In my (sadly now very long life’s experience) government interference in the UK property industry has rarely, if ever, been long term beneficial-remember double MIRAS, HIPS etc etc. Sadly, this legislation, almost certainly induced by a small number of high profile agents who grossly overcharged, will ensure that many perfectly respectable businesses will be unable to make ends meet and will go out of business. Optimists claim that technology will enable the best agents to avoid the impact of sharply reduced revenues. I’m not so sure!

    As Andy Halstead states above 2019 will indeed be a VERY tough year for many in this industry. For many it will be their last.

  8. DarrelKwong43

    Intended for the 1st June 2019…

    We were intending to leave

    We were intending to have a meaningful vote before Xmas

    Simply dont trust Parliament to do anything is my initial thought

    1. Andy Halstead

      everything crossed that you are right.

  9. gardenflat

    If like us you didn’t take the Michael with fees to begin with, you provide what you feel is good customer service and have a half decent website / database (technology is not going to make up your shortfall) then it’s business as usual.

    1. CountryLass

      I work for an agency that few realise does lettings in my local area. I’m trying to find ways to increase brand awareness as I can see some of the ones in my area going under and I would like to get a slice of the pie!

      We don’t charge ridiculous fees for Tenants, I think I worked it out before that after costs and tax, we make about £30 profit per application, slightly more if there is a guarantor. I’ve had people question me so many times expecting to find that there are hidden fees as we are one of the cheapest for tenant charges in the area, but with low stock I don’t have much to offer Tenants…

  10. 197029

    Fundamental shake up to the sector which represents a very real opportunity for good Agents to grow their business. As Andy has already so rightly said ‘value and service every time, bring it on! And I couldn’t have said it better……..

    1. rsvstu97

      Is that an opportunity for good agents to grow or the ones with deep pockets? Not always the same thing.

  11. jeremy1960

    Am I missing something else? Baroness Grim is looking at how landlords and agents charge for damages?  Surely the norm is to charge what it costs?

  12. smile please

    Oh well, make hay while the sun shines …………. “Doris, reprint all the tenancy fees with a 200% increase before we are forced to become a charity”.




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