Tenants to no longer have to pay letting fees

Charging tenants letting fees could soon be a thing of the past.

The English Housing Survey 2014-15 found the average letting fee charged per tenancy is £223.

But housing charity Shelter previously found one in seven tenants pay more than £500 in letting fees.

The new plans aim to make private sector renting fairer and more affordable.

They would also improve transparency for renters, as currently fees are not explained clearly and tenants can be charged very different and sometimes very high amounts for similar services, according to the Government.

The Draft Tenants' Fees Bill, outlined in the Queen's Speech, bans landlords and agents from requiring tenants to pay letting fees as a condition of their tenancy.

Measures to enforce the ban would enable tenants to recover fees which have been unlawfully charged.

Citizens Advice found nearly two-thirds (64%) of tenants had problems paying letting agents' fees and 42% had to borrow money to do so.

A consultation on banning letting fees has recently closed and the responses will be used to inform the draft Bill.