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Ban on letting fees must not leave any exploitable loopholes, say Lib Dems

The government’s decision to introduce a draft bill to parliament this week to ban letting agents and landlords from charging introductory fees to tenants across England has been warmly welcomed by the Liberal Democrats.

The bill, which comes as part of a reform of the private rental sector, was initially proposed in last year’s Autumn Statement. But the Lib Dems appear to be taking the credit for the proposed ban, following a long campaign by party peer, Olly Grender, who previously worked for Shelter.

“I very much welcome the ban on lettings fees and the cap on deposits, which Liberal Democrats have long been campaigning for,” said Wera Hobhouse, Liberal Democrat Communities and Local Government spokesperson. 

The MP for Bath wants the detail of this proposed legislation looked at closely “to ensure that there are no loopholes which unscrupulous letting agents could exploit”.

She added: “The ban must include all types of fees, so that they can’t simply be renamed and still charged to tenants.

“The next steps are to address the instability of renting by introducing longer tenancies and making it easier for renters to get on the property ladder.” 

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  • icon

    you want renters to get on the property ladder where they will find mortgage arrangement fees, solicitor costs, stamp duty, survey fees etc. And every time they want to fix their mortgage rate another fee. All these fees are far more than renting! Will you lobby to ban all these fees too?

  • Neil Moores

    Further to Andrew Ancell's comment. Mortgage valuation fees are paid by the tenant but are done for the benefit of the lender, not the borrower, and I've seen cases where the lender refuses to show the valuation to the buyer so we have to presume that they will be banned too shortly, as will those legal fees which are incurred protecting the interests of the lender too. Don't hold your breath though.....

  • icon

    This whole thing is going to go wrong, in effect tenants will end up paying more in rent per month. Rent that is already sky high, this isnt good for anyone in the long run.


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