A tenant-landlord intermediary firm have been criticised by housing charity Shelter for charging tenants up to £25 for “excessive use” of management services.
A joint investigation by the BBC and the University of Bristol’s student newspaper Epigram, found Landlord Support Alliance Bristol (LSA) charged tenants up to £25 for a phone call and £15 for emails for “unreasonable/excessive use of Management Services.”
The firm told the BBC that their charges, which are included in the tenancy agreement, are “legal, upfront and clear”.
But the principal solicitor for Shelter told the BBC that LSA’s charges would become unlawful once the Tenants Fees bill becomes law as the fees “bear no relation to the actual work involved”.
John Gallagher said: “At present, it’s almost like a licence to print money in terms of what agents can do.”
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LSA told the BBC the tenancy agreement was used by “thousands of landlords”, except the additional charges, which it said “are legal, clear and upfront”.
The firm said it provided “outstanding service, had a superb track record with hundreds of tenants and fostered a culture of goodwill and fairness”.