Can Letting Agent unilaterally increase commission?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Can Letting Agent unilaterally increase commission?

    I rent out a flat through a fully-managed service with a letting agent. My contract with the agent was signed 6 months ago. It is a Lettings Authority, and it incorporates the agents 'Terms of Business' at the time. The contract specifies the commission (10%).
    Last month I received an email from the agent saying they have changed their Terms of Business. The new ToB has a new clause added at the end which basically says the agent is free to change the commission rate at any time.
    This week I received another email, saying they have increased the commission to 12.2% - i.e. an increase of 22%.
    I don't see how they can legally do this - I can't believe they can unilaterally change an existing contract.
    Has anyone else had the same experience?

    #2
    There have been two or there threads discussing this already.

    Someone is going to have to take the cash flow hit that previously fell on the tenants. The agent's way of avoiding it would either be to pass it onto new landlords, as up front fees, or to pass it on to those landlords whose tenants have already taken it, by increasing their commission charge.

    Unless the original contract provides for such changes (utility contracts, bank contracts, etc. usually do), it does seem to be a breach of the contract.

    Arguably, up front fees would be the more market like solution (markets should tend to make charges track costs), but I suspect that many landlords don't have the cash reserves to pay up front fees, or it is more obvious to them how big those fees are.

    Because the market wasn't working before, the tenant fees were probably subsidising the commission. That means that commission may rise even if landlords are charged up front, as a working market will tend to limit the up front fees to a small markup on costs.

    Comment


      #3
      Hi,

      same problem here. I let a house through Choices ( excuse me while I vomit ). They have increased their commission without even informing me. Not even an email !

      It started at 8% in 2012 and they have put it up to 12%.

      I am in the middle fo querying this with them. I can't find anywhere in the original contract that states they can do this.

      I am considering taking legal advice but would be interested to hear other landlords' experiences first.

      cheers

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by leaseholder64 View Post
        There have been two or there threads discussing this already.
        is there a way you can highlight these threads on this subject. I have tried searching for them.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by BobbosHandle View Post

          is there a way you can highlight these threads on this subject. I have tried searching for them.
          https://forums.landlordzone.co.uk/fo...anagement-fees

          https://forums.landlordzone.co.uk/fo...g-the-landlord

          etc., or more generally google "site:forums.landlordzone.co.uk agent fees increase"

          Comment


            #6
            Also active in the last 24 hours: https://forums.landlordzone.co.uk/fo...crease-in-fees

            Comment

            Latest Activity

            Collapse

            • Letting agent removed property
              Endlessnine3
              Not sure if this is in the right place

              My bro got arrested and remanded in custody and within a week his letting agent emptied his room of all his property ie TV sofa clothes ect
              When I questioned him he said there had been a burglary and everything was taken he then said all the...
              20-05-2019, 21:45 PM
            • Reply to Letting agent removed property
              Jon66
              Pretty awful letting agents. Hope you get redress.
              10-07-2019, 19:56 PM
            • Lease Renewal Fee
              MaxStrong
              Hi,

              I’m a novice landlord based in Scotland. My letting agent charges me 12.5% and every 6 months I had a flat rate lease renewal fee of £80.

              With fairly recent changes to do away with Short Term Tenancies, I understand they cannot charge a lease renewal fee as they don’t...
              09-07-2019, 20:26 PM
            • Reply to Lease Renewal Fee
              jpkeates
              Have a look at the company accounts or google them to see if they make any finance based announcements.
              That'll give you some idea how profitable their business is.

              Part of the issue with letting agents is that good ones are difficult to find and doing the job well is much more expensive...
              10-07-2019, 08:40 AM
            • Reply to Letting agent removed property
              Endlessnine3
              Last one got taken down because {Mod - name removed} didn't like that the address of his office was on it so here it is again

              {Mod - Video link removed}
              09-07-2019, 17:45 PM
            • Jupix dashboard help
              Taiko
              Hi all,
              Hoping you could help me, anyone know how to find my Jupix 'passphrase'?

              Its the unique URL that my branch uses to upload my properties to portals. I need it to link to a plugin for a new website and I can't find it anywhere
              Any help on where on my dashboard to find...
              09-07-2019, 10:35 AM
            • Reply to Jupix dashboard help
              ash72
              Contact the software company themselves, you would get the right answer from them rather than this forum.
              09-07-2019, 16:23 PM
            • Property Ombudsman
              M Clavell
              My disputes with my letting agent re payments and application of the TFA now seem likely to go to the next stage, I.e. the TPO or legal action. I would be interested to hear the experiences of landlords who’ve been down the TPO route, i.e. length of time for resolution (TPO quote 3-4 months), apparent...
              03-07-2019, 17:03 PM
            • Reply to Property Ombudsman
              M Clavell
              Tenants Fees Act and The Property Ombudsman.
              03-07-2019, 18:03 PM
            • Reply to Property Ombudsman
              Berlingogirl
              Well, I for one, don't know what TFA and TPO are
              03-07-2019, 17:41 PM
            Working...
            X