Emma Reynolds, shadow housing minister, made her first speech just three days into the new role. The main topic of her first speech was in relation to fees charged to tenants by letting agents and stated that a Labour government would review them.
Reynolds predecessor, Jack Dromey, should have spoken at the event. However, Mark Prisk, housing minister until last week, had also been due to appear. Kris Hopkins, Prisk’s successor, did not fill his place leaving other speakers to fill in where the key note address should have been. Reynolds said that stability, affordability and the quality of homes was the key to growing the private rented sector.
She also said that a Labour government would focus on rising rents and the need for longer tenancies, as well as letting agents’ fees.
William Taylor, Director at Martin & Co Huddersfield (Estate Agent Huddersfield, Letting Agent Huddersfield, Property Management Huddersfield) said “I appreciate some agents do take advantage and charge ridiculous fee’s, but they are a private business and should be able to charge what they wish. Tenants should then avoid these agents. Reputable agents provide a service and as such should be able to charge a fee for their service. I can only hope that the regulation of lettings (if it ever happens) would do away with such issues.”