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The letting fees ban has now spread to Wales and could be introduced in the new Bill below:
We introduced the Renting Homes (Fees etc.) (Wales) Bill into the National Assembly for Wales on 11 June 2018.
The Bill will prohibit certain payments in connection with the granting, renewal or continuance of standard occupation contracts. It will also make provision in respect of the treatment of holding deposits. Any person guilty of an offence under the Bill is liable on summary conviction to a fine
Any payment of money in connection with the above is prohibited, unless an exception applies. These are rent, security deposits, holding deposits and payments in default. A landlord may pay a letting agent for work undertaken by the agent on behalf of the landlord.
Information on the scrutiny of the bill is available at the National Assembly for Wales website.
We have conducted a series of impact assessments in advance of the introduction of the Bill. These include:
Anyone in breach of the new rules may potentially be given a £500 fixed penalty, unlimited fines and or possibly the loss of their landlord licence.
Housing and Regeneration Minister, Rebecca Evans, said: “In recent years we have seen a significant increase in the number of people renting in Wales. The private rented sector now accounts for 15% of all housing.
“This Bill builds on the work we have already done here in Wales through the Housing and Renting Homes Acts to ensure that those wishing to rent in the private sector can expect high standards, fair treatment and transparency.
“Fees charged by letting agents often present a significant barrier to many tenants, especially those on lower incomes. The Bill will mean that tenants no longer face significant upfront fees when they start renting. In most instances they will only need to pay their monthly rent and a security deposit.
“No longer will tenants be charged for an accompanied viewing, receiving an inventory or signing a contract. No longer will they be charged for renewing a tenancy. And no longer will they have to pay check out fees when they move out.
“I want renting to be a positive and widely accessible choice for people and this Bill will ensure that rental costs become more reasonable, affordable and transparent.”
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