We posted on this last month – but no apologies for the reminder. This is very important. The ban on charging tenants fees for moving into a home starts on 1st June. There’s an official guide on gov.uk.
If you get something wrong, for your first offence you could face a civil penalty of £5,000. A second offence could see you getting an unlimited fan and being banned from acting as a landlord.
Here’s a screen shot which tells you the only fees you can ask your tenant to pay.
This is a really significant change in the law, so please make sure you are confidant you understand it before you accept any money from a tenant.
From 1st June, it will be illegal to charge someone for finding or allowing them to move into a new home – or for any costs associated with that process. You can only charge rent and a tenancy deposit which will be limited to the value of five weeks rent. (And of course, as you should already know – deposits must be properly registered in an approved scheme).
So all the things tenants sometimes get charged for:
• Credit checks
• Inventory costs
• Tenancy agreements
• Admin fees (of whatever type and whatever you want to call them)
• Finding fees
And anything else that a more imaginative landlord might think of will be banned.
The penalties on landlords or agents who break the rules will be £5,000 for a first offence then £30,000 for subsequent offences.
So if fees are a part of your regular income – you should be thinking about how you will need to make changes now, if you haven’t already been doing so.
You can find more information on gov.uk or on more or less any of the professional landlord organisation websites.