Advice needed on renewal fees

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    #16
    Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
    If the agent is going to be so letter of the law, I would look at the wording of the agreement relating to an "extension".

    In a general sense, you can extend your residence or stay at the property, but you can't actually "extend" a tenancy (which is a specific legal term and is often misused in contracts).
    Nice one.

    So arranging a replacement tenancy is probably not covered by the quoted clause?

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      #17
      Hi all, I'd really really appreciate any advice/knowledge or just other points of view on this issue. Sorry in advance for

      So I posted something similar a few months back after my letting agent informed me that the landlord was offering me another 12mth fixed term on my current home, in which myself and my daughter are happy. The sticking point came when the agent said I needed to pay £125 to "renew" the fixed term. I have argued the toss with them multiple times since November about this due to the new law that came into force last year and also due to the fact I don't have that kind of money free after all my rent and bills etc.

      Fast forward to January 2020 and the agents have continued to ignore my emails and the tenancy rolls over to a periodic with no communication from them. I pay my rent as normal (including the rent increase of £10, despite not signing or agreeing anything new). The agent then contacts me a week later to carry out an inspection. I ask if the landlord is on board with me staying, she tells me yes. All is ok, or so I thought...

      I receive a call from the agent today telling me the landlord is offering a 12 month fixed term as it has lapsed on to a periodic. Obviously I say yes, but then they tell me I still need to pay a renewal fee of £125! I go through the same circular conversation FOUR times before I suggest just remaining on a periodic tenancy. I am told that it is not possible as it "voids the LL's insurance". I reiterate that they are wrong for charging a fee for a new tenancy and that I cannot physically afford it anyway. So they say "ok well I will contact the landlord and tell them you are not willing to sign for another term". I corrected them that I am in fact willing etc etc and round and round we go...

      Half an hour later the same agent phoned back and explains that "because I am a good tenant..." the LL will pay my £125 fee and then they add another £10 on to my rent and pay an extra £5 this month so that in a years time he is fully reimbursed.

      Any advice or views on this? In all honesty I feel like I am being completely taken for a mug here and so is the LL in my opinion

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        #18
        Originally posted by GJL24 View Post
        I am told that it is not possible as it "voids the LL's insurance".
        That's almost certainly complete rubbish.

        Reply "Thanks for your offer of a new fixed term tenancy without me having to pay an upfront fee charge by you that is prohibited under the Tenant Fees Act 2019, with a proposed arrangement for the payment of said fee that is also illegal under the Tenant Fees Act. I have decided not to renew and will stay on the periodic tenancy deemed granted by the landlrod pursuant to s5 of the Housing Act 1988."

        Then follow the procedure to complain to the redress scheme the LA is a member of.
        I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

        I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.

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          #19
          This is what TPTB have wrought with their legislation. Feel free not to sign a new tenancy and pay £10 extra, or stay on the periodic.

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            #20
            They are trying to take the LL for a mug too. Perhaps contact him directly and agree a periodic tenancy between you?

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              #21
              I do wonder if the LL knows all the in's and out's of what the agent is doing here...... i doubt it. This is why i do not use an agent, i deal with and manage my properties myself and i am happy to let my tenants go onto periodic, its all this kind of shenanigans you mention that make the PRS look shady and run by spivs.

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                #22
                Originally posted by GJL24 View Post
                I feel like I am being completely taken for a mug here and so is the LL in my opinion
                Agreed, that is certainly what it sounds like. Not an unusual tactic from agents, it seems, but a thoroughly unethical one.

                Only direct comms with landlord are likely to uncover the truth.
                There is a fine line between irony and stupidity. If I say something absurd please assume that I am being facetious.

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                  #23
                  Is the charge allowed if the previous agreement said it was chargeable (TFA section 30)?

                  Ah, but I see that this was covered in your original thread at https://forums.landlordzone.co.uk/fo...n-renewal-fees

                  It appears that the previous agreement does not allow the fee, as per jpkeates' argument that the fee only applies to an extension, not to a new tenancy.

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                    #24
                    Report the agent to trading standards.
                    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

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                      #25
                      If you can stomach a fight, refuse to pay the additional £10 as it is clearly linked to the charge and therefore illegal to ask you to pay it. Call the agents / LLs bluff and say you will stay on a periodic, paying the agreed £10 rent rise and if he wants you to leave he will need to issue a section 21 - no court will evict you on these grounds!

                      The insurance statement is rubbish - and quite frankly the agent is ripping off whoever pay £125 for a renewal. £50 is more than enough to cover their costs and may agents do if for free.

                      Clearly the agent is trying to make up for lost fees and needs to be put back in their box!

                      Comment


                        #26
                        Thank you all for taking the time to reply, it is much appreciated!

                        UPDATE for today if anybody happens to be interested:

                        Letting agent called me again today and is now asking for me to pay the £5 towards this fee over the phone today. This resulted in yet another debate over the legitimacy of the fee.

                        LA: The new legislation only covers new tenancies and yours is a renewal so you still need to pay the fee.

                        Me: But this IS a new tenancy that you are offering, so you cannot charge the fee at all. The fixed term ended 26/01/2020 and is now a periodic, you now want me to sign for a new fixed term

                        LA: I can send you the "legal literature" explaining what fees we can charge. But the landlord has been generous by offering to pay your fee up front...

                        Me: Yes please do. In the meantime, I'd like to remain on a periodic

                        LA: As explained yesterday, this invalidates the LL insurance

                        Me: Ok 1. That's not my problem as a tenant and 2. I don't think you are being truthful here

                        LA: Well I will contact the LL and tell him that you are not willing to sign for the new term and it could be that eviction proceedings are started

                        Me: I will take my chances and contact the LL directly and he can decide what action to take with HIS property, without your input so the decision can be more impartial.

                        LA: You can't contact the LL and I already went through all this with him yesterday

                        Me: As I said, I don't believe you are being truthful and as you are aware I have a right to the LL address, which is on the expired tenancy agreement. I also look forward to receiving the aforementioned legal literature. Thank you and goodbye.




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                          #27
                          It's quite possible that the agent is trying to charge the landlord as well.
                          When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                          Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                          Comment


                            #28
                            Originally posted by jpucng62 View Post
                            if he wants you to leave he will need to issue a section 21 - no court will evict you on these grounds!
                            s21 is a no fault/grounds possession, the court wouldn't have a choice. Having said that, while the LA can serve the s21 on LL's behalf, they can't go to court for the LL, so if this is all LA's doing the T should be safe.
                            I am not a lawyer, nor am I licensed to provide any regulated advice. None of my posts should be treated as legal or financial advice.

                            I do not answer questions through private messages which should be posted publicly on the forum.

                            Comment


                              #29
                              Having just read the transcript of your conversation i am more than ever convinced that the agent is a chancer.

                              Comment


                                #30
                                Originally posted by jpkeates View Post
                                It's quite possible that the agent is trying to charge the landlord as well.
                                They are. Feel a bit bad on his behalf if it is true that he offered to pay my fee up front as well as his and I now just look like a troublemaker.

                                Comment

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