The campaign group Acorn, which has in the past named individual letting agencies that it claims are charging unfairly high fees, has now held a street protest outside a branch of a Bristol agent.
Acorn’s Bristol coordinator, Jane McDowell, told a video for the group’s website that fees in the city were “extortionate” and claimed her group had studied fees from six agents levied for incoming tenants of a two typical two bedroom property with rent of £950 pcm.
The average fees – not including a deposit or the first month’s rent – totalled £1,140.
“How is this affordable for ordinary people?” she asks in the video.
She also tells the camera that she and her group were urging members of the public to participate in the government’s official consultation on the proposal to ban letting agents’ fees imposed on tenants in England.
“We know full well that people several of the agencies will be filling in that consultation to say they should not be banned, but for decency’s sake they should be” she said.
Elsewhere on the website the group names a specific agency it claims let a property in poor condition, and has a petition naming the firm again and urging it to conduct repairs “on time and to an acceptable standard” and to exercise “transparency about deposits.”
Up to the time that Letting Agent Today checked yesterday, however, there were only 62 signatories to the petition.