Credit Rating, to let property

Has anybody heard of estate agents charging £200 - £300 to check your credit rating, before they'll let you rent one of their properties? Is this just a London thing?

I've rented my current flat for years, but now need to move. I can supply a good reference from my current landlord, show employer's references and bank statements, but for some properties I was interested in, I was told I'd have to pay the above amount for a check, which I've heard should cost about £10 anyway. ( I offered to pay for one myself, but the estate agents didn't want to know - had to be their credit rating agency, at their fee.)

I appreciate that I can always refuse to deal with estate agents asking for this, although if time's not on your side and you find something good you are over a bit stuck. I was just curious whether this was common, and what the excuse was - something their insurers demand, or just an means to charge more money?
Its common place, I won't let any tennant in any of my properties without a relatively clean credit rating.

I only make an exeption if they are paying at least 6 months in advance
Thanks for the quick reply.

I appreciate you don't want just anybody moving in to one of your properties, but £300 odd seems a little steep. Must be cheaper ways to check a person, if that's the sole objective.
A credit check can cost as little as £2.00 if they are charging £300 they are having your pants down.

If they are perforimg a credit check youa re entitled to see it as it leaves a scar on your credit file and will log a search against it.

Most use equifax or more commonly Experian.
Thanks for the info.

I'll try to get a £298 discount :D

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