Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Ilford North, Wes Streeting, has today written to Ilford North MP Lee Scott calling on him to back Labour's plan to abolish letting agent fees for tenants in a Commons vote today.
Labour's amendment to the Consumer Rights Bill, being debated today, would ban letting agent fees for tenants. This follows a recent announcement by Ed Miliband in Ilford North that the next Labour government will ban letting agents’ fees.
Wes Streeting said:
“Renters in Ilford North shoudn’t have to wait until the next election to see some action to clamp down on exorbitant letting agents’ fees. I hope that Lee Scott will vote to support the amendment to the Consumer Rights Bill that will ban these fees that are, on average, leaving renters £355 worse off every time they move house.”
Text of the letter to Lee Scott:
Tomorrow, an amendment to the Consumer Rights Bill will give all MPs the chance to stand up for the nine million people who rent by voting to ban letting agents fees for tenants. I am writing to urge you to stand up for renters in Ilford North by supporting that amendment.
Among the nine million people living in rented homes today are more than a million families and more than two million children. Tenants are hit by huge upfront costs through unfair letting agent fees. A survey of letting agents found that 94 per cent imposed additional charges on tenants on top of the deposit and rent in advance. Fees are extremely variable, but on average tenants are forced to pay £355 to their lettings agents every time they move house with some paying as much as £500. These costs are putting addition pressure on renters with 54 per cent of people surveyed saying they faced financial difficulties covering fees.
You will be aware that Ed Miliband recently announced in a speech at Redbridge Sport and Leisure Centre that the next Labour government will pass legislation to ban letting agent fees for tenants and to introduce longer-term tenancies with predictable rents. I hope you and I can establish some consensus tomorrow on the issue of letting agents’ fees for tenants. If you fail to vote for the amendment, all those who rent in Ilford North will be entitled to ask why you won't stand up for them.
In light of the public interest in this matter, exemplified by the growing number of signatures on Shelter’s petition to ban letting agents’ fees, I am publishing a copy of this letter on my website and releasing it to local media.
Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Ilford North