Tenant Fees Act’s Saturday Launch Causing Landlord Anxiety

As the new Tenant Fees Act comes into force on Saturday, the anxiety for landlords and agents to ensure they are compliant is starting to increase.

A recent survey of 1,000 landlords, completed by Just Landlords, found that 49% believe that the Tenants Fees Act is likely to increase rents as landlords leave the sector and housing stocks deplete.

However, those left behind, remain confused worried about how to remain compliant. According to the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS), unique visits to their online resource – DepositCap.com – have skyrocketed to 17,000 views in a month.

The increased traffic to the site offering advice on how the fees act works as well as a calculator capping a deposit rent at the new five-week maximum has been utilised massively in the past couple of weeks.

Whilst landlords ready themselves for the Tenants Fees Act to take effect at the end of this week, the fear that just as many are gearing up to sell their investments could present a headache to the government that aimed to offer private tenants increased powers, affordable deposits and lower rents.

Steve Harriott, Chief Executive of TDS, said:

“The number of visits that we’ve had to the website, in only a month, shows that there is a huge appetite for clear information and guidance on how to comply with the changes and avoid possible fines or prosecution.

“Agents and landlords are in real danger of falling foul of the law if they don’t make themselves aware of the implications of the new rules.

“We’re doing everything we can to make things as easy as possible for everyone to not only understand how the legislation affects them but also enabling agents and landlords a simple online solution to quickly and securely adjust the value of the deposits in line with the new legislation.

“Educating our customers and members on their responsibilities is paramount and we strive to make the processes of deposit protection simple, quick and efficient.”

Rose Jinks, of Just Landlords, commented:

“There has been a lot of talk within the property industry that landlords will increase rent prices as a result of the tenant fees ban, as they look to recoup potentially higher charges imposed by letting agents.

“It is clear that our respondents felt the same.

“Rents will go up, causing the Government’s efforts to make renting cheaper fall flat on its face.”

What impact will the Tenants Fees Act have on the rental sector? Will the various legislative changes lead to a landlord exodus?

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