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Consultation on letting agent fees ban launched

The government has begun the consultation period on its proposed ban on letting agents charging tenants upfront fees, as it lays out what it plans to change in the coming months, it has been reported.

The government has begun the consultation period on its proposed ban on letting agents charging tenants upfront fees, as it lays out what it plans to change in the coming months, it has been reported. 

Last year, the government said it wanted to make the rental market a more affordable option for tenants across the country, and one of the problems it highlighted was the costly fees that many face before they move into a property. 

As a result, ministers proposed a ban on letting agent fees to help make the initial process of renting a private home cheaper, leading to tenants being able to afford better quality rental homes. Already in place north of the border in Scotland, the government believes that such a ban will improve competition in the sector and end the high costs tenants face. 

Housing minister Gavin Barwell also said that the new rules would help to target the small number of letting agents who are 'exploiting' the role they have between landlords and tenants, double charging for the same service. 

Mr Barwell also said that as well as banning letting agent fees, the proposed rule change will also see landlords and third parties banned from charging tenants any fees, a move that is designed to stop any new charges being introduced to get around the bans. 

"We’re determined to make all types of housing more affordable and secure for ordinary working people. Tenants should only be required to pay their rent alongside a refundable deposit and not face hidden fees," he said, while also adding that the government will do its part in line with the housing whitepaper

However, there remain concerns about the government's move, with many worried that the change will mean tenants having to pay more as landlords and agents are forced to raise rental prices in order to make sure they do not lose money. 

To speak with one of our lettings team at Belvoir Liverpool Central then please call 0151 231 1613 or email liverpoolcentral@belvoir.co.uk

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