A Radio 5 podcast claimed that growing numbers of landlords are asking tenants with a lack of renting history or poor credit score to stump up six months’ rent in advance.
While the Tenant Fees Act bans most letting fees and caps tenancy deposits paid by tenants, there is no legal limit on advance rent payments.
OpenRent said that of the 1750,000 properties it let last year, in 95% of cases, tenants had to provide one month’s rent upfront but of the 9,000 cases where more than one month was required, nearly a quarter asked for six months.
The National Residential Landlords Association advises against big upfront payments and told the BBC: ‘We would encourage landlords to look for alternatives to asking for high levels of rent upfront. Where necessary, it is usually simpler to obtain a guarantor or suitable insurance product to provide assurance to tenants and landlords that rents will be covered.’