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  • Buy-to-Let

    Agent fees ban leading to shorter tenancies?

    It may be too soon to tell but wondered if anyone had experienced a higher tenant turnaround from the agent fees ban yet?

    I have had a few people give notice recently and my agent has advised that a lot more references are being requested from him from tenants of other properties they manage.

    With the much lower costs of finding a new property I wonder if this will be another consequence of the fee ban? Ironically the opposite of the longer tenancies as demanded by tenant groups!

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    That sounds more like the end goal of what the government wanted. I don't know without having more details about your area but to me it sounds that the CHOICE for the tenant to find something else has increased as a result of the ban.

    Tenant previously may have felt stuck in a tenancy (even if it was periodic) because moving would have meant paying a lot of fees to the agents; but now they don't have to pay that fee upfront. 

    A better way to judge is whether some landlords who took their property for granted knowing tenants are unlikely to move out may need to invest more into their property to keep the tenants happy. 

    The downside, if there does up being one, is that the rent could rise as the cost of void or tenants moving around means that demand might increase for nice property and there you might be able to charge more. 

    All the above is all hypothetical but just one of the possible scenarios that could be happening in your area as a result of the ban
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    Saagar

    Disclaimer: I have no legal expertise nor am I a qualified advisor on any subject. A humble landlord using an open forum to exchange ideas and experiences. 

    There's certainly going to be some pent up demand tenants delaying until the ban came in.

    Guess we'll see if it's a short term blip or a longer term change
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    DISCLAIMER just my personal opinion - for legal advice consult a qualified professional grown-up.

    we currently have a lot of instructions on the market right now which is partly seasonal and i agree, tenants may have been waiting for the fee ban to kick in. As we use a panlel of 500 letting agents accross London, we are still getting units under offer quickly.

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    @TobyTim

    >I have had a few people give notice recently and my agent has advised that a lot more references are being requested from him from tenants of other properties they manage.

    >With the much lower costs of finding a new property I wonder if this will be another consequence of the fee ban? Ironically the opposite of the longer tenancies as demanded by tenant groups!

    I believe that under Contract Law, as the Principal you have the absolute right to all the information available to your Agent. That should include details of any requests for reference, which should aiui be literally your property. An exception would I think require to be explicit in Statute Law.

    There may well be some words in your Agent contract designed to frustrate that, but unless there is something explicit in eg DP legislation, you should simply be able to instruct them to send you a copy. Or they may say that their reference supply to a third party is outside your contract, which I do not think is a sustainable argument.

    Here is a piece by Tessa Shepperton from a dew years ago, about references supplied to your agent by prospective tenants, where the principles are similar.
    https://www.landlordlawblog.co.uk/2010/0...ir-agents/

    Would welcome an up to date comment from a solicitor on this issue; I can see that it is the sort of thing that would cause some groups to go postal.

    ML

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