Referencing firm Rent4Sure says agents are going to face a “challenging time” when the letting fees ban is introduced, but that there will be ways to replace the lost income.
The government’s most recent English Housing Survey revealed that tenants on average pay £223 or more in fees to agents. Some 65% of private renters said they paid an admin fee, 33% a finders’ fee, 7% a non-returnable holding fee, 5% a returnable holding fee while 4% paid ‘other’ fees.
“One of the key ways to replace lost fees income is for agents to increase their insurance product uptake, and we’re ready to help them do that,” says Luke Burton, Sales and Marketing Director at Rent4sure.
“We want to work actively with our letting agent and landlord clients to deliver additional income streams that benefit tenants and landlords.”
The government consultation on a total fees ban ended on June 2nd but the Residential Landlords’ Association recently predicted that, because it will require primary legislation, it is unlikely a ban will be introduced before Autumn 2018.
Rent4Sure says it can offer agents both the opportunity to develop alternative income streams and also help them get to speed on tasks that before might have been outsourced and paid for by tenants.
Although the company offers a range of services to agents and landlords including right to rent checks, tenant and landlord insurance and rent protection and legal expensive insurance, it is the tenant referencing and credit checking service costs that fees have traditionally paid for – and will need replacing.
To do this the Rent4Sure has beefed up its support team with four dedicated staff tasked with doing this for the company’s 6,000 letting agent clients, who process 30,000 tenants a month through the company, helping it turn over £7 million last year.