Last week, the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) sent out letters to all relevant trade bodies regarding new landlord regulations, with guidance on how to ensure lettings ads refrain from displaying misleading prices. To prevent tenants from being landed with unexpected non-refundable fees and charges, which they may not be able to afford, CAP has informed all letting agents and private landlords that all costs must be included in the “asking rent” for the property and displayed prominently on all advertising material.
The regulations come after several landlords have been caught charging one price to draw in potential tenants, before piling on the costs of admin fees and inventory charges at a later date. As the Chief Executive for the Advertising Standards Authority, Guy Parker, has noted, renting is a “big financial commitment” and becoming more and more common in the UK, as people are unable to afford the cost of buying. To hide costs in the early stages, only for them to “hit tenants in the pocket at a time when they need every penny they’ve got” is simply not fair.
From 1st November 2013, websites, property portals and other forms of media advertising will be monitored by the appropriate authorities and any listings which do not include all relevant pricing and fees will be subject to follow-up action. At Mistoria, we are proud to say that with our costs, what you see is what you get. Our fees per month or per week are exactly that, with no hidden charges or nasty surprises. We agree with the ASA, that people should be aware of their monthly or weekly costs and should be able to plan their expenses. Trust between tenants and landlords is essential and hopefully the new scheme will reduce the number of unreliable landlords ripping off unsuspecting tenants.
Whether you are a landlord and would like to know more about our property management services, or a tenant looking for a room or property to rent, feel free to contact us on 0800 500 3015 to find out more about what Mistoria Estate Agents have to offer. Alternatively, you can contact us via our website.