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Fees Ban confirmed - and you can calculate how much it'll cost you

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.

  • Angus Shield

    Operating a small-mid-sized, well run portfolio, the fee ban is a reasonable % of our handover income; though we do not budget against it. Our tenancies are relatively long & stable. However, having spoken to our Landlord clients, they fully understand either a fee increase or a rent increase. A rent increase is a mid to long-term penalty for the tenant and in many recent hand-overs tenants have stated that they would be willing to pay a 'reasonable' fee rather than a higher rent. Why has this consultation NOT LISTENED to the coalface?!

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    No date, No details, what kind of announcement is this? I am afraid the ability just to organise something has become a very difficult task throughout UK! We thought it was banned already.
    So who are going to pay the fees for lettings agents survival? landlords?
    One of our tenants' account statement shows they have a lot more savings and clash flow than we do.
    This is just so un logical and so lack of business strategy behind the plan.

  • Robert Ulph

    Homelessness at a all time high, wage freeze for most of us for years, stamp duty increase for the investor, big squeeze on the small house builder with extra taxes. Reduced profit for the investor. Ban on letting fees is really going to assist in creating more stock and helping tenants to rent NO. Most tenants I have spoken to would rather pay a fee than to have higher rents, and most Landlords don't want to pay more fees, so who is benefiting here??? As a business we have already made the changed required to absorb the losses the fee ban will create but i can't see rents slowing down anytime soon and for a tenant to save a couple of hundred pounds at the start of a tenancy, but have to pay increased rents for ever doesn't benefit anyone. The consultation was a sham and all points raised never actually were debated, which is a real shame. All I can say is make the cuts you need now to save your business as this will not be overturned and can see it being made law in winter of 2018. The biggest concern is this will effect again the people who are struggling the most to meet the rents as agents will be able to charge for late rent payments and expect these to be enforced more to everyone.

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    If you're a lettings agent that doesn't know how they will be impacted by the fees ban, and needs FixFlo's free calculator to assist you, I'd say you're in a fair bit of trouble already!

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    One day a politician will understand the Residential Lettings Sector - one day.

  • Craig  W

    The housing minister is nothing but a puppet for the countries rich and elite. This has absolutely nothing to do with helping tenants and saving money. There is a very clear agenda to wipe out the small landlord and as many letting agents as possible to make way for the rich and corporate companies. Abolishment of relief from mortgage interest, increased stamp duty, ban on letting agents fees. What is the real result? The average landlord can no longer afford to be in the market and letting agents go out of business. In step the rich corporates to take over with build to rent and most other aspects of buy to let as well as becoming large and dominating letting agents which we are already starting to see. A cap would be confusing! What a load of nonsense! A set fee is anything but confusing. If confusion is an issue then ban stamp duty, afterall the new system is more confusing than its ever been! If a tenant tenant saves say £200 on letting fees is that really going to be the difference between getting on the housing ladder and not? If the government care so much about helping tenants why dont they stop banks and mortgage advisors and solicitors from charging fees? Afterall they are the DIRECT source of cost for someone who wants to BUY a property. Not ALL tenants want to buy! As ban letting fees to so call help tenants get on the housing ladder, they may as well ban sky from charging tenants to watch movies and sports, using the same excuse of they cant afford to buy a house because of it and the packages are all confusing! This has nothing at all to do with helping tenants, they know full well that rents are likely to rise making tenant costs higher on average and fees to landlords are likely to rise, pushing small landlords out of the buy to let market. ONLY THE STRONG & RICH SURVIVE.

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    Well said Craig W

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