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Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 33362
Experience:  Barrister at Self Employed Barrister
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I am about to rent a property for a 12 month tenancy with a

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I am about to rent a property for a 12 month tenancy with a six month break. I will be paying deposit plus 6 months rent up front because I have only been in my current job for one week and so would not pass landlords referencing and I don't have a guarantor..... The letting agents is trying to impose an extra £100 fee for 'basic references' even though I'll be paying 6 months up front...... Can I reasonably or legally refuse to pay this referencing fee, on the basis that I'm paying 6 months rent in advance?

It is a matter of their contract as to whether they insist on a referencing fee or not. It is equally something to negotiate. I can see no purpose of such a fee in your case for the reasons that you have explained. But they can refuse to rent you the property if you do not comply with their rules and regulations - so basically hold you to ransom. There is a bill going through Parliament at the moment with the intention to ban such reference fees but this is only a bill and not an Act yet so is not yet enforceable. As such they are allowed to make these charges, but they are incredibly unfair.

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