Lessons from the Scottish lettings market

By: Retties & Co and BDRC  Published: June 2014


In late 2013 Shelter commissioned independent research to assess the impact of the 2012 clarification of the ban on letting agent fees to renters in Scotland. The lessons are important for current debates in England, where there are growing calls for an end to letting fees to renters.

Summary

Since the clarification in November 2012, there have been various claims about what impact this change in law has had on the industry, landlords and Scotland’s renters.

This research sought to establish:


• The general health of the letting agency industry. Were businesses affected? If so, in what way and to what extent?


• Whether the clarification benefitted Scotland’s renters, and whether there was any negative impact on renters’ experience.


• How private landlords are dealing with any additional costs the change in law might have brought about. Are they absorbing any additional costs, or passing any costs incurred straight on to renters?


• Is non-compliance significant, and are letting agencies continuing to charge fees to renters?

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