Landlords ‘taking a financial hit as they support tenants’

May 20, 2020 11:01:00 PM

Landlords ‘taking a financial hit as they support tenants’

The majority of private landlords say they have been affected by the impact of coronavirus on their tenants, a survey has found.

Some 54% of landlords have experienced some combination of rent payment problems or unanticipated periods when properties have been empty, the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) said.

Some 44% of landlords had received a request for help from tenants and 90% had responded positively, the survey of more than 4,500 landlords found.

The help given included deferring or reducing rents, offering rent-free periods, refunding service charges or releasing renters from tenancies early.

Landlords can request three-month payment holidays on their mortgage if they are struggling due to the impact of coronavirus.

There is also a temporary ban on landlords starting proceedings to evict tenants.

Ben Beadle, chief executive of the NRLA, said: “We are continuing to work with landlords and the Government to sustain tenancies through the immediate crisis and beyond.

“As ministers consider their next steps regarding the ban on evictions, they should not make it more difficult to take action against tenants who may be committing anti-social behaviour or domestic abuse, or where they are wilfully withholding rent which they can afford to pay.

“We need landlords who are going through a difficult time to have the confidence to stay in the market. Otherwise we are only going to end up with a worsening housing crisis as more tenants chase fewer properties.”