Agents support the impending ban on letting fees charged to tenants and would like to see the end of Section 21, new research claims.
Those are among the findings of new research conducted with 130 agents nationwide for software provider Goodlord.
Reforms that estate agents are said to be broadly supportive of include:
- The ending of the landlord’s right to evict tenants without giving a reason
- A ban on agents charging administrative fees to tenants for moving into a property or renewing a tenancy
- A cap on the size of deposits charged by landlords
The research also showed that there is a stark regional divide in estate agents’ views on the rental process, with those in London and the south east least likely to regard the process as efficient or fair. While 64% of London agents think the rental process is fair to tenants, this figure is much lower than the 83% of agents across the rest of the country who think it is fair.
Other reforms for which there was significant support include:
- A cap on rent rises so that they do not exceed inflation (47% think this is important)
- Compensation for private tenants who are evicted through no fault of their own, to help with the cost of moving home (42% think this is important)
- A significant minority (35%) think there should be lease reform so that tenants can rent a place that is guaranteed for three to five years
Richard White, chief executive and co-founder of Goodlord, said: “Tenants across the country pay out vast sums of money each month for accommodation and service levels that are sub-standard, sometimes even dangerous. We know that they urgently want to see reform but it may surprise many that estate agents also want to see reform of the sector they work in.”
The research, during May this year, also interviewed 1,000 tenants on possible reforms to the rental sector and their view of the renting process
It found that there was deep mistrust of landlords by tenants, with only a third of tenants across the UK having a “great deal of trust” that their landlord will fix things in good time, keep rent increases to reasonable levels or return their deposits.
The survey also shows that younger tenants, those under 35, feel particularly vulnerable to poor treatment from landlords.