Landlords could face £30,000 fines as new rules for rental homes come into force

Since June 2019, property owners and letting agents in England have been banned from charge tenants fees for signing rental agreements. Rules allowed landlords to continue charging exit fees.

But as of today (June 1), the system landlords used to charge tenants has been closed as a ban on all tenant fees comes into effect.

According to the Telegraph, landlords will face large fines if they fail to adhere to the new rules.

Tenants will be able to reclaim their money through the court and landlords could risk being fined £5,000 for the first offence.

This figure would increase to a hefty £30,000 for any other subsequent violations.

Before the new laws were introduced last year, landlords would take more than five weeks’ rent from new tenants where annual rent is less than £50,000.

If it was £50,000 or more, landlords would take up to six weeks’ rent as a deposit.

There are currently no reports where a larger deposit could be charged, including if the tenant has any pets.

Since the outbreak of coronavirus, the UK government announced all evictions would be blocked until June 25.

As the date looms closer, tenants are calling for the government to extend this scheme until later in the year as millions of people are still unable to work.

Last week, housing minister Robert Jenrick, outlined new plans for the construction industry to get sites running and Britons back to work.

The Housing Secretary said he would allow start and finish times to be extended to 9pm, Monday to Saturday to make it easier for workers to observe social distancing rules.

He also thanked Taylor Wimpey for taking a majority of its staff off the furlough scheme and said their homes will offer a five percent discount to NHS staff and care workers.

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Speaking at Downing Street, Mr Jenrick said: “I’m allowing sites to apply to extend their working hours with immediate effect to 9pm, Monday to Saturday in residential areas and beyond that, in non-residential areas.

“We’re setting out a very clear Government position that these applications should be approved by local councils unless there are very compelling reasons not to do so.

“Varied start and finish times will make it much easier for sites to observe social distancing, take the pressure off public transport and keep Britain building.

“There are countless examples of the industry behaving responsibly and proactively during this pandemic.

“I would like to thank today, Taylor Wimpey, who have now got construction safely underway on a majority of their sites and have started removing staff from the furlough scheme and getting back to work on full pay.

“They are offering a discount of five percent for NHS staff and care workers on new homes.

“A great way to recognise the contribution that our frontline heroes are making across the country.”

But MPs shared concerns about safety after the Housing Secretary declared the home-selling sector is “back in business”.

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