Extortionate fees

WHEN will politicians bring the private rental agencies under control?

The rents, dreadful enough, can perhaps be blamed on market forces; but the extra fees they charge are extortionate, and surely a prime target for punitive legislation.

In a recent viewing with an agency, I was informed that “references” would cost £95 per applicant – that is, a fee for someone to type my name into a database and read out the credit rating score.

Then I was told there would also be a £185 non-refundable “holding fee” —-a fee for “taking the property off the market”; in other words a fee for doing nothing at all.

And what if I immediately paid my bond and the first month’s rent, thus committing myself from the off? No difference. This fee is a venal grabbing of renters’ money, safe in the knowledge we have nowhere else to go.

I am sure some internet genius will soon invent an online rental system which will wipe these agencies out of business.

In the meantime, any politician who ran on a ticket of introducing legislation to curb such excesses would surely gather large swathes of that elusive youth vote.

Dr Ben Young, Margaret Street, York

Comments (3)

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4:56pm Mon 7 Jan 13

E=MC^2 says...

The Scottish parliament recently clarified their legislation to make all charges by tenants other than rent and the refundable deposit , illegal.
So why hasn’t the Coalition Gov done the same? People rent mainly because they cannot afford to get on the housing ladder. And the Tory mindset sees those unable to afford to buy property as second class citizens. QED.
The Scottish parliament recently clarified their legislation to make all charges by tenants other than rent and the refundable deposit , illegal. So why hasn’t the Coalition Gov done the same? People rent mainly because they cannot afford to get on the housing ladder. And the Tory mindset sees those unable to afford to buy property[s] as second class citizens. QED. E=MC^2

6:15pm Mon 7 Jan 13

Payyourtax says...

I’m afraid that if the private landlords and their agents cannot police themselves then the government and local authorities will have to do it. I helped a friend’s daughter move a few months ago. Both she and her mother left the small flat she had rented for over a year absolutely spotless when they left. A month later when what remained of her deposit was returned it was £100 short. When she asked about the shortage she was told that the small freezer box in the refrigerator hadn’t been defrosted. I’m not saying all landlords or agents are the same but the irresponsible ones seem to have a licence to do whatever they like.
I’m afraid that if the private landlords and their agents cannot police themselves then the government and local authorities will have to do it. I helped a friend’s daughter move a few months ago. Both she and her mother left the small flat she had rented for over a year absolutely spotless when they left. A month later when what remained of her deposit was returned it was £100 short. When she asked about the shortage she was told that the small freezer box in the refrigerator hadn’t been defrosted. I’m not saying all landlords or agents are the same but the irresponsible ones seem to have a licence to do whatever they like. Payyourtax

9:05am Tue 8 Jan 13

capt spaulding says...

Payyourtax wrote:
I’m afraid that if the private landlords and their agents cannot police themselves then the government and local authorities will have to do it. I helped a friend’s daughter move a few months ago. Both she and her mother left the small flat she had rented for over a year absolutely spotless when they left. A month later when what remained of her deposit was returned it was £100 short. When she asked about the shortage she was told that the small freezer box in the refrigerator hadn’t been defrosted. I’m not saying all landlords or agents are the same but the irresponsible ones seem to have a licence to do whatever they like.
All landlord deposits are required by law to be lodged with a deposit company.
If the landlord didnt he can be prosecuted. I suggest your friend looks into that.
[quote][p][bold]Payyourtax[/bold] wrote: I’m afraid that if the private landlords and their agents cannot police themselves then the government and local authorities will have to do it. I helped a friend’s daughter move a few months ago. Both she and her mother left the small flat she had rented for over a year absolutely spotless when they left. A month later when what remained of her deposit was returned it was £100 short. When she asked about the shortage she was told that the small freezer box in the refrigerator hadn’t been defrosted. I’m not saying all landlords or agents are the same but the irresponsible ones seem to have a licence to do whatever they like.[/p][/quote]All landlord deposits are required by law to be lodged with a deposit company. If the landlord didnt he can be prosecuted. I suggest your friend looks into that. capt spaulding

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