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Tenant Fees Bill:
In an amendment to the Tenant Fees Bill currently passing through Parliament, Labour proposes to amend the new law. It would introduce a cap to make it illegal for any landlord to take a security in excess of three weeks’ rent.
The Bill, as it currently stands under the government’s proposals, would cap the deposit at six weeks rent. That figure, experts in the industry have argued, is the minimum necessary to deter rent arrears and to offer adequate protection for landlords.
Labour, on the other hand, claim the government’s six-week limit, according to The Independentnewspaper, “would do nothing to help most tenants, because the average deposit is already less than five weeks’ rent.”
Labour has said its proposed change would significantly limit the amount landlords would be allowed to take as a deposit and save tenants on average £575, or £928 in London
The Tenant Fees Bill, currently making progress through Parliament, is seeking to ban all fees that landlords and letting agents are permitted to charge tenants, with the exception of charges for defaults on the tenancy agreement.
The Bill had its second reading debate on Monday 21 May 2018, and has now been committed to a Public Bill Committee. The Committee met on Tuesday 5 June and is expected to report to the House by Tuesday 12 June 2018.
Speaking about the Bill and this proposed amendment Melanie Onn, Labour’s shadow housing minister, has said:
“Labour is fighting for a fairer deal for all renters. We recognise the private rented sector is the fastest growing area of housing, and it is right that they are not exploited by unfair fees. This government has failed renters for the last eight years. Labour will hold them to account to make sure the power between landlords and tenants is rebalanced.”
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has said:
“Our new measures will save hard-working renters an average of £200 every time they move, and in some cases much more.
“Landlords will be allowed to charge a maximum of six weeks’ rent and we expect them to consider what is the right deposit to take on a case-by-case basis.”
According to the government’s impact assessment produced for the Tenant Fees Bill, the average rental deposit was £1,161 in March 2017, which represents a rise of 19% since 2012.
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Under new rules introduced over the last couple of years, setting up a “bullet-proof” AST in 2018 is a bigger challenge that in the past, but it need not be all that difficult when using the experts at Anthony James Residential who will make sure that all the paperwork is correct and proof that it is served.
Parliament has introduced several conditions that landlords must now comply with. These hurdles are designed to weed-out rogue landlords and generally improve the quality of lettings for tenants. Get it wrong though, and you could be permanently lumbered with a bad tenant that you cant evict.
The key to avoiding this type trouble, and being in a position to use a notice called a Section 21. The notice often referred to as the "no-fault" notice means landlords can get their property back without having to prove the tenant has defaulted and the need for a court hearing.
However to use it has become more difficult and now you need two things:
- You have completed and served all the correct paperwork
- You have proof that you did that.
Many landlords forget the crucial second point, because if a tenant denies having received something your court application will be dismissed and you can say goodbye to your £325 court fee – back to square one with rent arrears racking up. However as apart of Anthony James Pre-tenancy administration process, an electronic audit trail is created from outset. This means a tenant cannot claim they did not receive the necessary paperwork to frustrate any necessary eviction process. Tommy-Lee Staples Director says. "In fact our system is so superior it prevents tenants moving into the property until we can bullet proof the contract for landlord". He continues the upside for the tenant is that landlords also have to behave more professionally and comply with legislation important to a tenants safety, well-being and deposit."
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Given the increased scrutiny landlords have to go through when applying for a new or renewal buy-to-let mortgage, Kent Reliance’s new income-backed product for limited companies and individual borrowers could prove a godsend.
The specialist mortgage provider has announced the new product, which it says will now take a broader view of customer affordability when the rental property yield on its own does not meet minimum requirements.
Using earned income to supplement the interest coverage ratio (ICR) for buy-to-let loans, this could be the first of many such offerings as competition for buy-to-let lending is still intense among mortgage lenders.
The product, says Kent, has been specifically tailored for non-portfolio landlords looking to borrow through a limited company arrangement or on an individual basis.
Adrian Moloney, sales director for One Savings Bank, which Kent Reliance is a part of, says:
“This new, broader approach to buy-to-let affordability will provide additional flexibility to allow earned income to form part of the affordability assessment for a buy-to-let application.
“High property values, particularly within London and the south east, can result in lower yields and as a result, some applicants may be refused lending, even on good quality properties. We are looking to fix that.
“To support this product, we have also updated our buy-to-let calculator so brokers can immediately see if a case fits the income backed criteria prior to submission, thereby simplifying the process and enabling a faster turnaround.”
Eamonn Delaney, Director at Anthony James said it was great to see a specialist lender continue to work hard, understand and meet consumer’s needs of many landlords.
Landlords who use our management service gain access to our specialist brokers who have access innovative products like this.
For more information contact Anthony James on 0208 304 0666.
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The bank of England Base rate remained the same last Thursday bringing welcome news to the buy to let mortgage market. More impressive however is that Mortgage Trackers which follows rates and fees from 18 of the largest lenders in the buy-to-let market showed that the cost of popular buy-to-let fixed rates deals has continued to fall since the start of the year.
“Five-year fixed rate mortgages have been particularly competitively priced with the monthly cost of borrowing a typical amount of £150,000 falling between £10 and £22 compared to the cost if the loan had been taken out in January.
The bank of England base rate hold on Thursday, however, does not necessarily mean such competitive rates are here to stay. A base rate rise is certainly on the cards at some point so landlords who are looking to borrow or refinance may need to move very fast indeed.”
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Due to our unique brand and methods of delivering landlord success, Anthony James is expanding its operation and local area network. We are recruiting experienced professionals to come and join our growing team.
Anthony James is one of the largest and longest established local lettings agents in the south east. We have been successfully managing property for decades and the company now looks forward to expanding its network to cover a wider geographical area.
As apart of the strategic business plan the following positions have become available.
Letting Negotiators x 3; Full Time. Highly Competitive Salary
Minimum 2 years experience plus a proven track record of delivering customer results.
Lettings receptionist x 2 Part Time 20 hours per week. Salary £8.50 per hour
Track record in customer service and diary management. A desire to work in Property
Property Manager. Full and Part Time. Highly Competitive Salary
Min 2 years Experience. Ability to work on their own and part of a team, A track record in problem solving and customer service.
For more information or to apply please sent CV to