Petition update

Let's get letting fees banned!

Vicky Spratt
United Kingdom

Apr 4, 2016 — Thank you again for your support. We're so close to 60,000 now and the positive message received have been really overwhelming. It's also so touching to read about how many people are affected by this problem.

Instead of saving for a deposit to buy our own house, Generation Rent are not only forking out thousands of pounds on rent but hundreds of pounds on letting agents fees for things ranging from 'set up fees' to name changes and tenancy renewals. There's currently no cap on what a letting agent can charge you for their services and the costs vary widely between different agencies with seemingly no rhyme or reason.

SpareRoom.co.uk ran a poll for us asking their users the question ‘do you think lettings agents' fees charged to tenants should be banned in England like they are in Scotland?

Of the responses they received over the course of a week:

92% of people said yes
5% said no
3% said they didn’t know

The people who answered were made up of 81% tenants and lodgers, 10% landlords, 2% letting agents and 7% people who own homes but have lodgers. So, that 92% in favour of banning fees is not only made up by renters. Matt Hutchinson, Communications Director for SpareRoom.com said,

'Deposits used to be the biggest pain point for renters - now it's letting fees. The huge variation in what fees are charged, and the lack of clarity as to what they're for, leave renters feeling helpless. It's no wonder 92% of people we polled thought fees charged to tenants should be banned in England as they already are in Scotland.'

It’s illegal for agencies to charge tenants fees in Scotland, and has been since 2012, and those who are currently involved with renting properties clearly want change but where do politicians in England stand on this?

Last year housing was a key issue for politicians trying to get our attention and, ultimately, our votes in the run up to the general election. Labour, in particular, really went for the younger vote and promised to take steps to make the private renting sector work better for tenants, and specifically do something about letting agents’ fees if they were elected.

It would be great if you could click on the link to a see a video where representatives from all of the main parties pledged to do something about letting fees before the general election last year. Then tweet or write to your MP and ask them where they stand on this.

We've had so much support already but please do keep sharing!

Let's get these fees banned and make renting fair!


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