Are you getting the Tenant Fees Act wrong?
Some agents are even charging fees for this service, but more worryingly, many do not fully understand the new legislation. We have received
The confusion has come about due to the transition period in the Tenant Fees Act. Tenancies from before 1 June this year fall into the one-year transition period during which fees that are included in the existing tenancy can still be charged. That transition period runs until the end of May 2020
The deposit cap is not included in that transition period, because it is considered to have been agreed at the beginning of the tenancy and is therefore a contractual requirement of that tenancy. For example, if a landlord took a six-week deposit before the cap came in, they wouldn’t need to refund the extra week.
The Government’s guidance on the transition period came out quite late, and it seems that advice was being shared to the effect that the deposit needed to be refunded before the guidance came out. This is not the case, and the Government’s guidance has backed this up.
It’s important to note that there are different requirements in Wales, and currently there is no deposit cap in place in Wales.
Landlords in England are no longer able to charge for many services provided to the tenant, including referencing, credit checks, inventories, assessing guarantors, and services such as cleaning, gardening and administration. However, landlords are still able to claim for damages where there is a breach of the tenancy agreement.
For more information, visit gov.uk/government/publications/tenant-fees-act-2019-guidance. Or you can access the NLA’s guidance here.