The Tenant Fees Act, introduced by the Government in 2019, bans most letting fees in the private rented sector. The aim of the Act is to reduce the costs that tenants can face at the outset, and throughout, a tenancy. Tenants will be able to see, at a glance, what a given property will cost them in the advertised rent with no hidden costs.
The ban on tenant fees applies to new or renewed tenancy agreements signed on or after 1 June 2019.
The Act does not apply to the following charges (i.e. these charges can still be made to tenants):
- for tenants who do not use a No Deposit solution, a refundable tenancy deposit capped at no more than 5 weeks’ rent where the total annual rent is less than £50,000, or 6 weeks’ rent where the total annual rent is £50,000 or above
- a refundable holding deposit (to reserve a property) capped at no more than 1 week’s rent
- payments associated with early termination of the tenancy, when requested by the tenant
- payments capped at £50 (or reasonably incurred costs, if higher) for the variation, assignment or novation of a tenancy
- payments in respect of utilities, communication services, TV licence and Council Tax
- a default fee for late payment of rent and replacement of a lost key/security device giving access to the housing, where required under a tenancy agreement
The Act does not apply to any fees charged by flatfair for its No Deposit solution. flatfair acts as a third party in the rental transaction and it is up to a tenant to decide whether to use flatfair or pay a traditional cash deposit to secure a property.