Since the introduction of the tenant fees ban in June this year, a number of unintended consequences have emerged. The most prominent of which is that many landlords may now owe their tenants money for unintentionally (or otherwise) breaching the rules of the ban.
As we know, the fees ban means that landlords and letting agents can no longer charge for anything outside of deposits. Key handovers, ‘admin fees’, inventory reports and other miscellaneous charges must now be covered by landlords. In addition to this, a cap on deposit amounts was also set at no more than five week’s rent (six, for rents of more than £50,000 per year).
It has recently emerged that tenants numbering into the hundreds are due refunds after being wrongly charged for services, or by paying too much in their deposit. Some tenants have paid as much as eight weeks rent upfront at the request of their landlords, and are now attempting to get this back.
One tenancy deposit scheme has revealed that since the
introduction of the Tenant Fees Act, they have received 2550 refund requests,
totalling in excess of £817,000.
the chair for The AIIC and MD at My Property Group stated “This is just the tip
of the iceberg as for many years deposit requests had been on the rise in the
highly competitive Private Rented Sector. I am certain there will be many more
requests as many tenants will not even know about this and their rights.
He went on
to say “This is exactly as our Government intended with deposit caps coming
into force and renters being given back some of their hard-earned monies. Great
news for tenants all round”.
Many landlords owe their tenants £100s. If you feel you may be owed money then get in touch with your deposit scheme for more information and assistance.