Stratford lettings agent fined over fees to tenants
PUBLISHED: 15:00 10 January 2017
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The branch of Foxtons was told to pay £2,500 after failing to clearly explain an administrative fee charged to prospective tenants.
After a trading standards officer exposed the error at the beginning of last year and demanded action, the agents failed to act until as late as March 2016.
Newham Council housing advisor councillor Andrew Baikie said: “Agents who have failed to clearly display their fees and charges are not operating within the law.
“We are taking action to protect our residents.”
The fine follows Newham’s setting up of a Fair Lettings Project in which all residential lettings agents in the borough – around 200 – are inspected to make sure tenants and landlords aren’t being ripped off.
The work includes making sure fees are made clear, deposits are protected and agents offer fair terms and conditions.
Since 2013, more than 900 rogue landlords have been prosecuted with 28 banned from operating in the borough.
“We have been striving to improve the quality of housing available in the borough,” the councillor for Little Ilford added. “We are using all the powers at our disposal to drive up standards for tenants.”
Foxtons were approached for comment but declined.