Labour, if they come to power, have confirmed once again they intend to suggest reforms to the lettings industry.

This is despite massive disapproval from the lettings industry – the experts you would have thought.

Although far from perfect, it isn’t as bad as people seem to think. But in an environment where 40% of lettings agents are not regulated, and therefore the public run the risk of being let down, financially, legally and morally, would that not be the focus? You’d have hoped so.

But no, the plan is thus;

1. Three-year tenancy agreements beginning with a six-month probationary period allowing landlords to evict a tenant if they are in breach of their contract. This would then be followed by a two-and-a half-year term in which tenants would be able, as they are now, to terminate contracts after the first six months with one month’s notice.
2. A ban on what Miliband calls “excessive rental increases”. Labour says it will be guided by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, which is examining options for a new rent benchmark. This could be linked to average rent rises or inflation or a combination of the two.
3. A ban on letting agents charging tenants fees for low level services, such as simply signing a tenancy agreement. They will instead have to ask landlords for fees.
Completely unworkable, unmanageable, and unnecessary. Why do they bother, are there not more pressing needs, in lettings/estate agency and elsewhere?

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