An organisation that describes itself as “an independent group of private renters” says it has identified 21 letting agents out of 56 in one London borough which do not publish information about their fees online – in breach of new legislation.
The survey - conducted about a month ago by the group called Waltham Forest Renters - claims that new tenants in the borough can expect to pay an average of £484 in letting agents’ fees.
In addition to the claim about agents failing to list their fees online, the group says the range of fees for new tenants varies markedly from £792 to around £150.
Letting Agent Today has tried to establish whether the group has updated its findings, without success. The local council in Waltham Forest says it does not know whether the findings of the group have been passed on to trading standards.
However, the claim regarding the 21 agents ‘failing to display’ has now been taken up by consumer body Which? and appears on its website in a blog written by the Which? ‘consumer rights producer’ Adam French - who says he lives in Waltham Forest.
Since May 27 all information about fees, client money protection and which redress scheme an agent has joined should be prominently displayed in every office and on the website, under rules set out in the Consumer Rights Act 2015.
All fees, charges or penalties which are payable to an agent by a landlord or tenant in relation to an Assured or Assured Shorthold Tenancy must be displayed. However, agents will not be required to publicise the rent payable to a landlord; a tenancy deposit; and any fees, charges or penalities which a letting agent receives from a landlord under a tenancy from another person.