Originally published at: https://blog.openrent.co.uk/celebrating-the-end-of-tenant-fees-in-england-wales/
Almost three years since being first announced, the Tenant Fees Act will finally come into force in England on 1st June. A similar law will commence in Wales in September.
This is something OpenRent has been campaigning for since founding in 2012. So we’re in the mood to celebrate!
The Fee-Free Philosophy
OpenRent has always believed in a transparent and fair property market.
We understand that the tenant is forced to deal with whomever the landlord chooses as their agent.
Tenants choose properties based on their location, price and number of bedrooms, not their agent. They can’t shop around. They aren’t protected by competition keeping agent fees low.
Fees are often hidden, too. Maybe the agent fails to display them on their website. Or maybe they only mention them after you’ve set your heart on a property, or even after you’ve paid a holding deposit. That’s wrong.
We think charging tenants these fees is simply unfair. So we’ve never done it. That simple philosophy has been at the heart of OpenRent for seven years , ever since we founded in 2012.
It’s absolutely no surprise that landlords agree. Landlords don’t want to see their tenants being ripped off by unscrupulous agent fees, either.
With the support of over 100,000 of these landlords, OpenRent has become the biggest letting agent in the UK.
Along the way, we’ve saved tenants £85m in agent fees.
A Long Battle
Before OpenRent, landlords were forced to pay £1,000+ to letting agents, who would then also charge the tenant. These fees were hidden and not grounded in real costs.
The 1st June is the day that all tenants in England, not just the 1.5m who have used our site, will be able to find homes to rent knowing that they won’t be ripped off. Soon Wales will follow England and Scotland and become fee-free, too.
We have argued for this result on the radio, in the papers, online and in Parliament for years. By becoming the UK’s biggest letting agent without charging fees, we have proved that a fair and transparent business model is totally compatible with business success.
Because of the support of hundreds of thousands of like-minded landlords, together we have given unfair letting agents no excuse to charge £300 per tenancy on average.
OpenRent will continue to lead the sector on transparency and customer experience, using technology to revolutionise the way people rent property in the UK.