You read that right: before the ban on letting fees has even come into force (this Saturday, folks), letting agents are already flouting existing laws on fees. Since 2015 agents have been supposed to display details of the fees they charge tenants online, but we’ve found 21 that are not.
Local councils could be collecting £5000 in fines for these offences, so the fact that agents are still getting away with it does not fill us with confidence that the fees ban will be enforced effectively.
Deposits are behind some of the most common problems we hear about from renters:
- tenants’ money doesn’t get protected
- the struggle to get deposits back when moving home
- and many of us are unable to afford them in the first place
The good news is the government is looking at how the deposits system can be improved and is asking for renters’ experiences until 5 September. This is your chance to share your experience of deposits and help change the system.
One of the great things about the Tenant Fees Act is that you can save money whether you move home or stay put.
Since June, tenants signing an agreement on a new home in England do not have to pay letting agent fees. (As of yesterday, the ban applies across the UK.)
But there’s been less fanfare for the cap on deposits at five weeks’ rent, which means that a tenant renewing the agreement on their current home could get a refund if their deposit is worth more than that.
Transport for London has banned adverts for holiday let companies that take homes away from Londoners, following a successful campaign against the anti-tenant adverts by Generation Rent.
There are just a few days left to have your say about the government’s plans to scrap Section 21, the law that allows landlords to evict tenants without needing a reason.
The Ministry of Housing’s consultation on abolishing Section 21 closes on Saturday and today, alongside other members of the End Unfair Evictions coalition, we went down to Westminster to call on the government to give tenants the protections needed to enjoy a stable home.
There was no mention of private renting in the Queen’s Speech today, but it would be a mistake for Boris Johnson’s government to overlook it.
Right now, the private rented sector is a wild west which at best costs a fortune for somewhere you can’t call a home and at its worst is dangerously unsafe. In fact, it’s so unregulated that right now the government doesn’t actually know how many landlords are out there.
We polled 2,000 people on their experience of moving home.
Today we’ve joined up with renters and housing justice campaigners from across England to launch a national renter manifesto in time for the 2019 General Election.
Written by Generation Rent, London Renters Union, ACORN, New Economics Foundation, Renters’ Rights London and Tenants Union UK, the manifesto calls for radical reform of private renting and a transformation of the housing system – including the abolition of section 21 evictions, the introduction of rent controls and an end to discrimination of tenants on housing benefit.
Whatever way you look at it – this General Election is important. The next Government will be tackling the big issues of the day like Brexit, crime, protecting our NHS and fixing the housing crisis. At this election Generation Rent is getting stuck in.