The Tenant Fee Ban (TFB) was introduced on the 1st June 2019 for residential properties. This applies to both letting agents and landlords across England.
From 1 June 2019, the only payments that landlords or letting agents can charge to tenants in relation to new contracts are:
a refundable tenancy deposit capped at no more than 5 weeks’ rent where the total annual rent is less than £50,000, or 6 weeks’ rent where the total annual rent is £50,000 or above
a refundable holding deposit (to reserve a property) capped at no more than 1 week’s rent
payments associated with early termination of the tenancy, when requested by the tenant
payments capped at £50 (or reasonably incurred costs, if higher) for the variation, assignment or novation of a tenancy
payments in respect of utilities, communication services, TV licence and Council Tax
a default fee for late payment of rent and replacement of a lost key/security device giving access to the housing, where required under a tenancy agreement
Furthermore, late rent charges are capped at annual amount of 3% above the Bank of
England lending rate. Therefore, unless the tenant was in significant rent arrears, this would arguable not even be worth the effort to charge - certainly a heavy blow for landlords.
The above represents all the fees you are allowed to charge in a standard tenancy as of 1st June 2019. It is certainly easier to list what you can charge for as opposed to what you cannot charge for. However, for further confirmation, the following charges are no longer possible: any administration fees, referencing fees, tenancy setup fees, check-in fees, check-out fees, inventory fees, late rent fees (except the amount mentioned above), tenancy renewal fees, rent refund fees or fees for providing a reference.
Please note that any active tenancies that were signed prior to 1st June 2019 can still use the former fees as long as they were clearly listed. This will last up until 1st June 2020 or until a new tenancy agreement is signed - whichever comes sooner.
If you have any further questions, please feel free to get in touch.