Money house

Lettings agency fee ban must be loophole-free

07 December 2016

Private tenants pay an average of £337 in lettings agency fees.

The London Assembly today welcomed the announcement of a lettings agency fee ban.

It also agreed a unanimous motion calling on the Mayor to make the strongest representations to the Government that the ban must be comprehensive and not contain any loopholes.

Tom Copley AM, who proposed the motion said:

“By 2020, a third of Londoners will rent from a private landlord. Private renting in London is expensive enough without being hit by fees averaging £337. Letting agents provide a service to landlords, not tenants. Landlords can shop around for a better deal, tenants can’t. A ban on fees for tenants is well overdue.

Despite scaremongering by lettings agencies, research by Shelter has shown there has been no increase in rents following the ban on letting agents’ fees in Scotland in 2012.  

Having made this important pledge to tenants, the government must now deliver on it. We call on the Mayor to make representations to government to ensure this most welcome change contains no loopholes.”

 

The full text of the Motion is:

“This Assembly notes that London has the largest share of private tenants anywhere in the country. Further notes that Citizen’s Advice Bureau research has found that private tenants pay an average of £337 in lettings agency fees.

This Assembly also notes that a ban on lettings agency fees for tenants has been in place in Scotland since 2012 and that research by Shelter found that there had been no increase in rents for tenants as a result.

This Assembly therefore welcomes the Government’s announcement that lettings agency fees for tenants in England will be banned. We call on the Mayor to make the strongest representations to the Government that this ban must be comprehensive and not contain any loopholes.”

Notes to editors

  1. Watch the full webcast.
  2. The motion was agreed unanimously.
  3. Tom Copley AM, who proposed the motion, is available for interviews. Please see contact details below. 
  4. As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.

For media enquiries, please contact Alison Bell on 020 7983 4428.  For out of hours media enquiries, call 020 7983 4000 and ask for the London Assembly duty press officerNon-media enquiries should be directed to the Public Liaison Unit on 020 7983 4100.