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Government keeps eye on advance rent demands

Demands for rent to be paid months in advance are something the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government ‘will continue to monitor closely’.

So said junior housing minister Eddie Hughes when answering a Parliamentary question from Labour MP Tanmanjeet Dhesi.

What plans did the Government have for restricting the number of months of rent landlords are allowed to request be paid upfront, he asked? And what assessment has it made of the effect on tenants in the private rental market of landlords being able to charge tenants six months of rent in advance?

‘It is for landlords and tenants to agree the amount of rent that should be charged and how much should be paid in advance, according to individual circumstances’, said Hughes. ‘We do not expect it to be the norm that landlords ask for multiple months of rent in advance.

‘The Government took action through the Tenant Fees Act to prohibit rent from being “frontloaded” at the outset of a tenancy. This prevents a situation where tenants are charged higher rent in place of letting fees.

‘The Act means that a landlord cannot require a tenant to pay a higher amount for one or several months then a lower amount after this.

‘We have not assessed the impact of the practice of multiple months of rent being paid upfront, but will continue to monitor this closely’.