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There’s still a year to go until tenant fees ban REALLY comes in, guidance reminds agents

Mainstream media outlets are reporting the ban as if it applies to all tenancies after June 1st but it will only apply to new ones, the new official guidance stresses.

Nigel Lewis

tenant fees ban

The government has published statutory guidance on the tenant fees ban for letting agents that reveals how the ‘cliff edge’ of June 1st will not be the income disaster many business owners have been fretting over.

Although the fees ban applies to all new tenancy contracts signed after June 1st this year, it will be another 12 months before the act’s power are implemented in full.

This gives letting agencies another year to adjust their business models, although many tenants are likely to be confused; many mainstream consumer outlets including most recently The Mirror have reported the start of the ban as if it applies to all tenancies.

Last week it reported that the “the new rules are set to protect five million renters in England from rip off tenancy fees from June”.

Tenant fees ban

But tenants on existing contracts can still be charged fees as normal until June 1st 2020 after which all tenancies regardless of their start date or type will be subject to the new law.

The guidance gives an example of how the system will work. A tenancy that is currently running but that ends before June 1st next year can feature check-out fees, for example, but if the tenancy finishes after June 1st 2020 then Any exit fees charged will be illegal.

The requirements of the act relating to holding deposits will not apply to those paid before the start date. Landlords are also not required to repay any tenancy deposit that exceeds the cap until a new fixed term tenancy is agreed

Read the guidance in full.

April 2, 2019

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