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Agent behind tenant fees ban e-petition reveals what he thinks of government response

The young letting agent who started the e-petition signed by nearly 11,000 people calling for a cap rather than a ban vents his frustration at the result.

Rob Farrelly

tenant fees ban rob farrellyFirstly, thanks to everyone who has supported our campaign so far. It shows the strength in our views and in my opinion outweighs the 4,700 [consultation process] responses on which the draft [Tenant Fees Bill] was based on.

Do you think they made the 4,700 people who offered their feedback aware that their rents will be dramatically rising come 2019 (which has been widely acknowledged and wholly ignored)?

Perhaps the government should take some feedback from the people who will be losing their jobs/businesses?

And perhaps they should take some feedback from the people that will no longer be able to pass references because their affordability no longer meets the higher rents threshold which would you believe, has been acknowledged…and ignored.

To say I am disappointed with the response would be a huge understatement and to be honest is a mockery to the hours committed to raising awareness and acquiring signatures.

Tenant fees ban

At no point does this response consider that a fee cap would be a fair and just solution nor do they make any attempt to explain as to why it would not be a fair and just solution –  instead admitting that enforcing a complete ban is an easier option for them.

It seems the giants in the industry have bowed down to the legislation (even though this is still a draft) and given up entirely to the idea of a fee cap as opposed to a complete ban.

We need more pressure from the top – it was clear to me that I would not get this when both ARLA and ZPG refused to help with my campaign.

Which is more than I can say for Rightmove who just didn’t call back…

TENANT FEES BANWith the lack of said support it looks like unless we hit the 100,000 signatures this is already a done deal and my final words would be good luck to all independent letting agents who have worked hard for their positions and for those who do not make it through this transitional period.

I honestly wish you the very best in the future!

Rob Farrelly is a founding partner in Essex agency Friend & Farrelly Property Services.

Sign the e-petition here.


February 21, 2018

One comment

  1. We have decided that, as the government really doesn’t want to entertain ideas that actually have the best interests of both of our clients at heart, landlords and tenants, we will favour our landlords and advise them to increase the rent propertionate to our tenant fees that we currently charge.

    This means tenants will be forced to pay more than our fees if they stay in the property longer than a year but unfortunately, we are not a charity and we simply cannot afford to absorb the costs, what with money laundering costs, redress scheme costs, the likelihood of being forced to pay for CMP by the likes of Property Mark who fail to reprimand their members who are convicted of offences (including Foxtons and Spicerhart).

    I guess the government has until 2019 to reconsider the damage they’re going to do to the tenants who live in properties owned by our landlord clients.

    We don’t want our tenants to be unfairly charged more than our tenant fees but the government wants an outright ban, increased rents is the only way we can absorb these costs.

    At least landlords are happy at increased rents and we earn more in management fees over time so as a for profit business, we’re happy too. Its just a shame its at the expense of our tenants.

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