Housing minister Alok Sharma has once again confirmed that the ban on lettings’ agents fees levied on tenants in England will be formally announced this year - but once again there has been no date and no exact detail of what the measure will include.
Speaking to the Resi Conference at Newport, south Wales - where Sharma also ruled out the introduction of rent controls, which he described as “Marxist” - the minister told delegates that the ban on fees “would create a more transparent market”.
The Department of Communities and Local Government has in recent weeks told Letting Agent Today that it did not know of the date of any formal announcement on fees, nor when there would be a formal response to the consultation period on the issue.
The next high-profile opportunity may be during the speech by Communities Secretary Sajid Javid to the Conservative Party conference, which begins on October 1.
Meanwhile Fixflo has launched a free tool which allows letting agents to calculate exactly how much they will lose as a result of the expected ban on fees being levied on tenants.
The software company says there isn’t a lettings professional in the country who will be unaware of the incoming letting fees ban and the potential impact it could have on their business and profits.
However, agents can now quantify this precisely by entering information such as the number of properties they manage, the average length of tenancy and their average letting fee.
“The letting fees ban is dominating industry discussion, with many agents unsure of how it will affect them in the event of the ban going ahead, as it now looks as though it will do. The calculator has been designed to give them a good idea of how to begin planning for the future today” explains Rajeev Nayyar, Fixflo’s managing director.
You can see the calculator here.