0:03 AM, 1st June 2023, About 4 months ago 5
Hello, I have a property which is rented out via a letting agent with full management service. The current agreement was signed by both parties in 2018 with a monthly % management service fee and fixed costs for renewals there is no end date to the contract. The latest terms of business were requested in May and the agent sent a copy of the 2018 contract stating it as being current. I became aware the agency has recently been charging a higher % monthly fee plus a far higher renewal fee than stated in this ‘current’ contract. The manager claims they can do this owing to a clause in the terms of business: “If a tenancy agreement extends for more than 2 years, we reserve the right to increase the quoted fees.”
They sent a single email in November 2022 stating their intention to increase the monthly management fee but the sample contract attachment was totally unrelated to my property and fees different to those previously or currently being charged. This email was unread by me at the time and the agent confirmed there were no follow-up phone calls or emails to discuss the proposed fee increases. The manager claims that a new management contract is not necessary.
Can the agent charge whatever fees they wish just by sending a single email, without any discussion or negotiation with me?
Is it correct that a new agreement does not need to be drawn up and signed by both parties, purely because of a clause that states they reserve the right to increase fees?