Tenants would no longer have to pay council tax under plans being considered by the Labour Party. The charge would be replaced with a new “progressive property tax” set nationally instead of by local councils and paid for by landlords instead of tenants. Owners of second homes, empty homes and those owned by people not resident in the UK for tax purposes would have to pay the new tax at a “significantly” higher rate. The policy idea is contained in a new report which calls on Labour to make a string of “radical but practical changes in the way land in the UK is used and governed” if it wins the next election.
A quarter of private landlords are looking to sell at least one property over the next year, according to recently published research.  Of almost 2,500 landlords who responded to a survey carried out by the Residential Landlords Association (RLA), just over 25 per cent said that they were planning to sell at least one property over the next year, the highest proportion since the RLA started asking this question regularly in 2016. The same survey showed that 23 per cent of landlords reported an increase in the demand for rental property over the previous three months, with 57 per cent reporting it to be stable.
It has always been our company policy to take one month’s rent to protect the landlord’s position during the referencing process.  Unfortunately, this has now become illegal.  However, we are able take 7 days money on your behalf.  We can hold this sum for a maximum of 15 days while referencing progresses.  Obviously, this puts the landlord in a weaker position than before. Therefore, to try and minimise our Landlords’ exposure to risk, we are protecting your position by obtaining more information up front from tenants where possible, before we take their holding deposit.  
Under the above-mentioned fees ban, new capped rates for tenant deposits on assured shorthold tenancies (ASTs) have also come into force.  For tenancies where the rent is up to £50,000 per year, the deposit is now capped at five weeks’ rent. Landlords should also be aware that no additional deposit can be taken beyond a five-week deposit already charged. This means for example, if a tenant requests a pet part way through the tenancy, the landlord is now unable to increase the deposit to allow for carpet cleaning or fumigation.
As we all know, the tenant fees ban finally came into effect in England on 1st June 2019.  Many believe the ban will make renting more affordable to tenants. Others believe the costs tenants usually incur at the outset will instead be spread across the life of the tenancy through higher rents.  Whatever your opinion, it is now illegal for landlords and agents to charge certain fees for new tenancy agreements. In short, the Tenant Fees Ban has two main intentions; 1. To ban fees being charged to tenants; and 2. To cap deposits as a multiple of the rent.


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