The government may be embroiled in Brexit woes right now, but it has managed to find the time to do a u-turn on its decision to cap tenant deposits at six weeks. Lord Kennedy of Southwark and Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth have tabled an amendment to the Tenant Fees Bill that would see deposits capped at five weeks instead of six weeks. The average tenancy deposit amount is 4.9 weeks however most landlords and letting agents were hoping for deposits equivalent to 6 weeks rent in the event that tenants leave in rent arrears and the property requires cleaning.
As part of the legislation landlords and letting agents may be required to return part of a deposit that is above 5 weeks rent however we are yet to receive confirmation on this element. If this does happen and you benefit from our Management service this is something that we would manage for you, however if you manage the property yourself you may need to take action. As always we will keep you updated.
Other amendments to the Bill include protecting tenants from fees by limiting the type of default fees that can be charged by landlords and property agents.
This change means that during the tenancy landlords and agents will only be able to charge fees to replace lost keys or for late rent. Landlords will still be able to claim back costs for damage through the tenancy deposit at the end of the tenancy.