Rent Smart Wales slashes agent fees

Rent Smart Wales slashes agent fees

All private landlords are required to register themselves and their properties with Rent Smart Wales, the Welsh Governmentâ€Ã¢â€žÂ¢s registration and licensing scheme which was launched in November 2015.

Landlords and Agents who let and manage property must get a licence by making a declaration that they are ‘fit and proper’ to hold a licence and passing approved training.

Since the launch of the scheme, the City of Cardiff Council, as the single licensing authority for the whole of Wales, has been listening to the feedback and comments received from smaller agents about the £3,728 licence cost.   

A review of the fees, giving consideration to the size of an agent’s business and affordability, has now been completed.

Agent representative bodies - UKALA, ARLA, RICS, NALS - have been consulted and a new fee structure based on the number of properties managed by an agent has now been agreed and will come into effect on April 25.

The fee is graduated based on the size of businesses. Licence costs range from £1,890 to £6,600 for five years depending on number of properties. The fees also take into account whether an agent is a member of a professional body and whether an agent applies online or by paper. Payment options are also available for smaller businesses.


The revised fees are based on estimated costs and resources and are set to fully recover costs to enable effective delivery of the service, but not to make a profit.

Cabinet Member for Environment, Cllr Bob Derbyshire, said: “Since the launch of Rent Smart Wales in November, the broad consensus in relation to the cost of agent licences has been that change is necessary. The City Council has taken on the feedback and reviewed the fees to reflect comments received. The consensus was that the fee structure should reflect the size of the business.  

Rent Smart Wales aims to professionalise the private rented sector by promoting the need for compliance with the law and providing good safe housing for tenants. The costs of delivering the scheme have to be met, but this is a unique scheme in the UK and there will therefore be areas where we will be able to learn from experience. We are particularly grateful to the professional agent bodies who have contributed their views during this review process.”

Landlords and agents have until November 23, 2016 to comply with their new legal obligations as part of the Rent Smart Wales scheme, without fear of legal action. Landlords and Agents need to plan early as it will take time for licence applications to be processed.

David Cox, managing director, Association of Residential Letting Agents, comments: “When Rent Smart Wales first announced the £3728 fee for all agents, we branded this unfair as it didn’t take into account the size of the letting agent business, meaning both the smallest and largest agents would be charged the same amount in fees.

Following our continued lobbying, today Rent Smart Wales has announced a new fee structure that will take effect from the 25th April 2016. The new fee is now graduated and will take into account the size of the business and importantly, offer a discount to ARLA members. This is great news and offers agents a much fairer fee structure which also demonstrates the benefit of professional membership.”

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Latest Comments

Kelvin Lloyd
Kelvin Lloyd 09 Oct 2017

IT is up, to the Planners. If they will only give permission for bungalows on certain (suitable) sites, they will be built.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

It's just the beginning of the shocking rise.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

I have recently read that the bungalows can provide social housing for elderly residents in London.

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zoe glover
zoe glover 05 Oct 2017

Update! Worst company I have ever dealt with. Undervalued a Cambridge property by over 100k, wont take on any evidence of valuation including a RICS valuation done 3 years ago for the very same value...

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Paul Edwards
Paul Edwards 27 Sep 2017

Its nonsense articles such as this that make it harder to get clients to realise just how difficult the market is out there. When you see Rightmove and there are more 'price reduced' then 'new' most days...

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Tom Allen
Tom Allen 20 Sep 2017

Absolutely agree with you!

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RyanGeo
RyanGeo 18 Sep 2017

A sharp correction would be a less dramatic expression to use. That is already underway in certain sectors in Reading where I practice as Chartered Surveyor

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sean benton
sean benton 01 Sep 2017

Identity theft is a thread for any profession. So,people should stay alarmed. I once take help from a letting agent and came to know that letting agents are taking every precaution to prevent fraudulent...

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Mark N.
Mark N. 30 Aug 2017

We have seen a surge in instructions over August and that should continue into September too.

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Chris
Chris 30 Aug 2017

Unfortunately, all the legislation bears its force on Landlords and ignores, naively, the effect of Rogue Tenants on the ability of landlords to keep houses in repair and offer properties for rent at reasonable...

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Christian Donovan
Christian Donovan 18 Aug 2017

The write-down on house values, combined with the fall in the GBP saddled the fund?s property portfolio with a 1.4% loss in the second quarter. The shocking amount of $240 million.

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Samantha Goodman
Samantha Goodman 11 Aug 2017

Interesting point of view.

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