The proposed ban on letting agent fees has seemingly gathered substantial support from members of the public, according to charity Citizens Advice.
In addition, most of those in favour of the fees feel that private renters should only be permitted to pay a nominal cost.
Citizen’s Advice note that these fees currently cost tenants an average of £337 per person. However, the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA Propertymark) feels £200 per tenant is a more accurate figure.
These fees relate to a number of administration tasks, such as reference, credit and immigration checks.
This said, the survey reveals that 46% of UK residents feel that tenants should not have to pay any admin fees or charges, apart from a deposit and month’s rent, when renting through an agent. 61% of those asked support a definitive outright ban on fees when renting direct from a landlord.
When asked how much was too much in regards to tenants fees, 61% of respondents thought tenants should not pay any more than £50 to obtain a property.
This figure jumps to 74% when looking at results for private renters.
These results indicate that many people are pleased with the idea that tenants should have to pay a small fee in order to cover legitimate expenses during the application process.
Nick Marr, co-founder of The House Shop, which commissioned the YouGov research, observed: ‘Our latest YouGov survey results clearly show that there is little public support for the current system where tenants can end up paying hundreds of pounds in admin fees to secure a new property.’
‘In fact, the majority of people said that tenants should pay a minimal fee of no more than £50,’ he added.
Concluding, Mr Marr said: ‘Many tenants are prepared to pay a small fee for legitimate expenses involved in securing a property, such as a professional reference check, as this has become common practice even among private landlords – but vague and undefined ‘admin charges’ that can total hundreds of pounds are tough to defend in the current market.’