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The Law Society - Conveyancing

19

Sep

2013

ASA sets deadline for letting agents to be up-front about fees

A deadline of 1st November 2013 has been set by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for letting agents and private landlords to ensure that they prominently include information about non-optional fees in their ads for rental properties. Guidance and free advice are being provided by the Committee of Advertising Practice on the issue to help advertisers adhere to the new rules, and the ASA will be monitoring adverts across various media.

The deadline has been set following a March 2013 ruling by the ASA which focused on concerns about transparency of pricing in the private rental sector, particularly relating to non-optional fees such as administration fees, charges for inventories and reference checks.  The ASA want to see such charges calculated in advance, whenever possible, and added to the quoted asking rent advertised.  Where advance calculation is impossible, this needs to be clearly explained in any advertising –  and details of how further charges are calculated given –  to ensure that lessees are provided with full information from the outset.

Further details are available on the ASA website at:

www.asa.org.uk/News-resources/Media-Centre/2013/ASA-sets-deadline-for-letting-agents-to-be-up-front-about-fees.aspx

For advice on lettings and rental agreements, please contact our Head of Property – Perry Gear at our Barnet Office, or Judith Bleetman at our Cockfosters Office.

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