The Tenants Fees Bill was yesterday (2/5/18) introduced into Parliament, bringing an end to expensive lettings fees.
Whilst the ban on letting fees was originally announced in the Autumn statement 2016, the final bill mirrors the feedback following the public consultation, and subsequent scrutiny from the Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee.
It’s estimated that the impact of the ban will save tenants around £240 million per year.
In addition, the Bill’s other key measures include:
- A cap on holding deposits at no more than a single week’s rent
- Creating a financial penalty of £5,000 for an initial breach of the ban
- If an individual is found to have been fined or convicted of the same offence in the last five year, a criminal offence can apply, with fines of up to £30,000
- Prevention of landlords recovering possession of their property via section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 procedure until they have repaid any unlawfully charged fees
Commenting on the Bill, Housing Secretary Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP said: “This government is determined to build a housing market fit for the future. Tenants across the country should not be stung by unexpected costs.
“That’s why we’re delivering our promise to ban letting fees, alongside other measures to make renting fairer and more transparent.”