Deposit-Free Renting: Building a Brighter Future for Generation Rent

With news that UK rents are predicted to rise 11.4% by 2023, it’s no wonder private tenants might be feeling a little ill at ease. While the thriving BTR sector is providing new homes for renters all over the UK, many are struggling to get their foot in the door because of high deposit costs and administration fees. But there’s good news on the horizon. Thanks to the innovative
approach of companies like flatfair, the UK’s fastest-growing deposit alternative, renting is becoming decidedly more affordable and accessible.

A better way to rent

Tenancy deposits are expensive. With flatfair, landlords can offer tenants the option to pay an affordable membership fee instead of an expensive deposit. Thanks to flatfair’s technology, landlords can charge tenants directly for any lawful claims at the end of their tenancy, whilst benefiting from better protection (up to 12 weeks’ worth of rent) than a deposit provides, faster payouts and fewer voids. At the same time, flatfair landlords and tenants have access to an Independent Dispute Resolution service, just as they would under the traditional deposit system, so everyone has peace of mind. In addition to all this, flatfair provides instant referencing for tenants, which means some can even move in the same day they sign up for a property.

Leading the way

Greystar, the world’s largest landlord, is just one of flatfair’s many partners that now offers deposit-free renting to its tenants. Currently managing more than 700,000 homes worldwide, Greystar is already a major player in the United States, and is now building up its UK portfolio. Their most recently completed Sailmakers’ development comprises two luxury buildings in the heart of Canary Wharf which are already available to rent with flatfair.
“We’re very excited to be partnering with flatfair to offer deposit-free renting to all our new Sailmaker’s tenants. We’re dedicated to removing as many barriers as possible for our tenants and make renting as accessible as we can throughout the UK,” says Eva Kiivit, Regional Operations Manager at Greystar. The company is already using an array of lettings agents throughout the country to help promote their ambitious number of units, including Knight Frank and Hamptons International. But flatfair is already seeing an impressive uptake among other tenants renting with leading London BTR schemes. One has reported that, in Q4 of 2018, 82% of their tenants opted to rent deposit-free with flatfair versus paying a traditional deposit, and these deposit-free homes are being snapped up fast. “We want BTR developers, landlords and managing agents to fill their properties quickly, without having to compromise on the protection they’re being offered. That’s why we offer up to 12 weeks’ cover against damages,” explains Adam Ali, flatfair Partnerships Manager. “At the same time, by removing the double deposit burden that can weigh heavily on tenants, we’re making renting more affordable for everyone, and our instant referencing service removes another barrier that can slow the whole rental process down.”

A brighter future

So it’s not all doom and gloom for Generation Rent. In fact, thanks to the innovative approach of providers like flatfair, renting is becoming more accessible than ever before, and for ever more luxurious homes too. With partners including the Spicerhaart group, the Bedford Estate, Manhattan Loft Gardens, Lyvly and Places for People, flatfair is already offering deposit-free
renting to tenants up and down the country. It’s also offering an alternative to landlords feeling threatened by the proposed five-week deposit cap that’s set to come into force under the Tenant Fees Bill this spring. By offering more than double the cover a traditional deposit would provide, flatfair is committed to affording landlords the highest standards of protection. “Landlords are, understandably, very concerned that the five-week deposit cap could leave them exposed to unexpected costs at the end of tenancies, meaning they actually have to charge tenants more in monthly rent – the precise opposite of
what the legislation is striving to achieve,” explains Daniel Jeczmien, flatfair founder and COO.

“By offering them more than double that amount of protection, we’re not only safeguarding landlords’ interests, but we’re also making sure tenants don’t shoulder the financial burden that may come with the new regulations.”
However you look at it, deposit-free renting offers a brighter future for everyone involved. With property giants like Greystar leading the way, it’s only a matter of time before others follow suit.