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Minimind

Charge On Late Rent Payment

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Due to a mistake on my part, the standing order for my rent went into the rental agency's account on the Tuesday rather than the due Saturday (i.e. two working days late). I received a letter informing me that they were charging me £35 for the 'considerable administration' that this incurred.

It is stated in my contract that they can charge me if my rent is late. I gritted my teeth and paid since I was in error but now I'm wondering if they can do this? It seems slightly unreasonable for just two days.

They also said that if I didn't pay the charge in cash at their offices within seven days, I would be charged another £35.

Edited by Minimind

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Due to a mistake on my part, the standing order for my rent went into the rental agency's account on the Tuesday rather than the due Saturday (i.e. two working days late). I received a letter informing me that they were charging me £35 for the 'considerable administration' that this incurred.

It is stated in my contract that they can charge me if my rent is late. I gritted my teeth and paid since I was in error but now I'm wondering if they can do this? It seems slightly unreasonable for just two days.

They also said that if I didn't pay the charge in cash at their offices within seven days, I would be charged another £35.

You should write a contract stating that you want you deposit back on the day that it expires. And that you will charge them £50 per day after that date.

They will forget about this and no doubt return your deposit late, in which case you will be entitled to compensation.

I said this week how EA's that sell don't bother me at all but letting agents are not much better than wheel clampers and traffic wardens.

I am a landlord myself but do not need to use a letting agent since the property is on the street I live on.

Take every opportunity to get your moneysworth by complaining about the trivial things you'd normally sort out yourself. You will soon forget about the £35.

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I have never heard such utter drivel enworb.

A contract needs TWO parties to agree. The poster making such a contract, which the agent would quite obviously refuse to sign, is just a utter waste of time.

The agent is allowed to charge his actual financial loss incurred by the fact that you paid late. This charge seems slightly steep but not extortionately so.

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Thanks Benjamin. I've already paid so it's too late to pursue the matter further, but it has played on my mind. According to the document you linked to, Guidance on unfair terms in tenancy agreements, an unreasonable demand would be:

"Should it be necessary to send a letter with regards to late payment of rent, these are chargeable to the tenant at a rate of £35 plus VAT."

whereas a reasonable replacement would be:

"[The tenant must] pay the reasonable costs of the Landlord's Agent for each letter the Agent, acting reasonably, has to send to the tenant concerning breaches of the tenancy agreement."

The agency received my late rent before I received the letter with their demand as it was only a single business day (and one Saturday) late. I do think it's unreasonable. I'm going to insist on 24 hours notice when they want to bring future renters to view the property! Petty I know but I can be unreasonable too!

I was happy with them up until then. If they insist on pushing to the limit of our contract, so can I.

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I refused to deal with letting agencies when looking for houses. Instead I advertise in the local papers. I have so far had two beautiful houses that suppassed normal letted houses and landlords dreams are made of.

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Under regulations coming into force in 2005, which additionally strengthen other Laws already in place, no charge of this kind can be made if it is unreasonable, and it IS grossly unreasonable. You cannot be penalised in this way if the rent was a mere two days late. That is absurd and the landlord and or agent know perfectly well this is completely unenforceable. Such demand is seeking to make a profit out of something that is nowhere near a default circumstance.

The rules are quite clear. Interest on late rent can only be charged if it is reasonably close to the prevailing bank rate in the relevant period. For two days at the current bank rate, plus a tiny bit more to ensure they do not lose money the amount would be a tiny, tiny amount of interest....pennies....not even a pound.

A landlord, and his agent CANNOT charge abitrary costs like "admin", even if they predefine them in the agreement. All charges must be demonstrably REASONABLE. If they persist in this you have grounds for harrassment which is a criminal offence. No court would ever sanction this......a £35 "admin" charge for rent only two days late is absurd. In any case no default occurs until 21 days (although some landlords claim so after 14 days).

The law is totally on your side.

VP

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A landlord, and his agent CANNOT charge abitrary costs like "admin"

They most certainly can, if such charges can be proven to be reasonable. For example, imagine a late payment results in a letter being sent out to the tenant. The landlord definitely can charge for the cost of this, which will include postage, packing, and the "labour" incurred to draft such a letter. Or at least, this is what I believed! perhaps I am wrong. It goes without saying however, that if this charge is valid, then the charge cannot be some set amount, as the amount woukld have to be the actual charges incurred.

Edited by MrShed

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  • 302 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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