Calls for Government to rethink Renters Rights Bill
By |Published On: 29th June 2016|

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Calls for Government to rethink Renters Rights Bill

By |Published On: 29th June 2016|

This article is an external press release originally published on the Landlord News website, which has now been migrated to the Just Landlords blog.

The Association of Independent Inventory Clerks has called on the Government to continue to let letting agents charge tenants for inventory checks.

According to the industry body, these fees will then be transferred to landlords, who will in turn incorporate them into tenants’ rents.

Inventory fees

Just this month, the Renters’ Rights Bill was given an unopposed second reading in the House of Lords. The Bill includes measures to ban letting agents from charging tenants registration, admin, reference check, renewal and exit fees.

Given the unopposed reading, the Bill is thought to have a very strong chance of success. It is running alongside a petition challenging agent fees being charged to tenants, which has more than 250,000 signatures.

Patricia Barber, Chair of the Association of Independent Inventory Clerks, said, ‘here at the AIIC, we’re strongly opposed to the banning of inventory fees charged to tenants by letting agents. We envisage that if banned these charges would continue to be charged to tenants through the unspecified and unclear means of a higher rent.’[1]

Calls for Government to rethink Renters Rights Bill

Calls for Government to rethink Renters Rights Bill


Barber is concerned that being unable to charge tenants a fee could encourage some agents bypass inventories completely.

She notes that, ‘a detailed inventory helps landlords, agents and tenants to determine exactly how the property’s condition has changed over the course of the tenancy, what can be deemed fair wear and tear and what needs to be replaced and therefore deducted from the tenant’s deposit.’[1]

‘We totally understand that some fees charged to tenants are too high and complicated, but we believe that if fair and worthwhile feels like inventory checks are made clear to the tenant then there should be no problem in them being charged,’ Barber continued.[1]

Concluding, Barber acknowledges that, ‘the vast majority of letting agents are transparent in the fees they charge to tenants. Banning fees altogether and particularly inventory check fees is certainly not the answer and could contribute to more deposit disputes and property damage further down the line.’[1]

It must be noted that the Renters Rights Bill remains a long way from becoming law. There is still the House of Commons to negotiate, before receiving Royal Assent.


About the Author: Em Morley (she/they)

Em is the Content Marketing Manager for Just Landlords, with over five years of experience writing for insurance and property websites. Together with the knowledge and expertise of the Just Landlords underwriting team, Em aims to provide those in the property industry with helpful resources. When she’s not at her computer researching and writing property and insurance guides, you’ll find her exploring the British countryside, searching for geocaches.

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