Tenants must get interest-free loans to clear Covid arrears – agent

A scheme providing interest-free loans to tenants with Covid-related arrears should be offered across the UK. That’s the view of David Alexander of property management firm Apropos, who says such a scheme – currently operated in Scotland – should be spread across the rest of the UK. “This scheme is welcome as it will support tenants in paying their rent during this difficult period. The Westminster government should offer a similar…

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Association of Residential Letting Agents Central Housing Group

England trailing rest of UK in support for renters and landlords

The Scottish Government has today announced that hardship loans for tenants will be made available in Scotland to those unable to access other forms of support for their housing costs. A new £10 million Tenant Hardship Loan Fund will open later this Autumn, and will be part of a package to support people in Scotland struggling to pay rent due to financial difficulty associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. It comes just weeks after the…

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Six Month Notice Period Central Housing Group

ARLA Propertymark slams last-ditch bid to stop evictions

ARLA Propertymark has hit out against last minute attempts to effectively reinstate the eviction ban which finally came to an end last weekend. Earlier this week Letting Agent Today reported on attempts by Liberal Democrat Baroness Olly Grender and Labour peer Lord Ponsonby of Shulbredeh to delay or reverse the end of the ban. Both were using relatively obscure Parliamentary procedures in the House of Lords. Now Timothy Douglas, ARLA…

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Green Homes Grants: what landlords need to know

NRLA local authority officer Gavin Dick explains more about new Green Homes Grants, which will soon be available for landlords in England to improve the energy efficiency of their rental properties. Government grants that are available to the private rented sector – unusual words and as rare as hen’s teeth. Yet there are now grants, in the form of vouchers, available for landlords to do energy efficiency work to their properties.…

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Six Month Notice Period Central Housing Group

What landlords need to know about notice period changes

Late on Friday afternoon, the Government announced a significant change at short notice to the way possession works in England. Following on from the eleventh hour extension to the ban on possession proceedings the week before, the Government has now introduced a number of changes to the required notice period for Section 8 and Section 21 notices. After extensive lobbying from the NRLA, the changes to notice periods are far more…

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Yield league table revealed for large-scale regeneration areas

Striving for higher yields remains the holy grail for buy to let, and new research suggests investors could be attracted by large infrastructure projects. Buy to let management platform Howsy has analysed 34 areas currently seeing significant infrastructure work. Top of the league table comes Dundee Waterfront, where properties average £146,000 to buy and produce a typical rent of £881 per month – thus making a 7.2 per cent yield. Expected…

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Online rental platforms should do more to stop criminal scams – call

A new report demands that online rental platforms and portals allowing direct advertising by clients do more to deter fake landlords conning tenants. The call comes from a new report – called Journeys in the Shadow Private Rented Sector, published by the University of York and Cambridge House Research – which wants online platforms that allow direct advertising by landlords to up their game. Specifically it calls for checks on…

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Shock 58 per cent rise in licensing fee imposed by council

A new private rental licensing regime in a London borough is being described as “a major step forward in improving living standards” – but comes with a 58 per cent rise in some fees for buy to let investors and professional landlords. The new additional licensing scheme introduced this week by Enfield council includes most HMOs in the borough. This extends licensing to an estimated 8,000 HMOs including shared houses,…

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Pressure piles on Boris Johnson to create aid fund for tenants

Pressure is building on the UK government to ensure England follows the example of both Scotland and Wales and creates a hardship loan scheme for poorer tenants. Yesterday afternoon the Scottish Government announced that it was to follow suit with the Cardiff devolved administration and introduce an interest-free hardship loan scheme for tenants to pay off their Coronavirus-related arrears. “We welcome today’s announcement which follows similar steps taken in Wales…

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Just grand! Average UK rent a whisker under £1,000 pcm

The average rent across the UK is now £985 per calendar month, up some 2.1 per cent on four weeks ago and 1.5 per cent higher than a year ago. That’s the headline from HomeLet’s latest rental market snapshot. When London is excluded, the average rent in the UK is now £825. Eleven of the 12 regions monitored show an increase in rental values between August last year and two,…

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Optimum Property Type Central Housing Group

Higher rents near London high streets – but for how long?

Rents are higher for Londoners living near busy high streets – for the moment at least. Research by rental platform Spotahome has looked at each London borough based on the high street population as a percentage of total. The research shows that in all nine boroughs where more than 50 per cent of the population is located on or near the high street, people pay above the London average rent…

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Shock bid to block evictions to be made this week in House of Lords

A Liberal Democrat Baroness says she is to make a last-ditch bid in the House of Lords tomorrow to stop evictions going ahead following the end of the ban. Lib Dem Olly Grender will use a procedural motion known as a Prayer To Annul in the Lords to try to block evictions. This little-known and little-used procedure could force a vote on the government’s wider Coronavirus measures. Baroness Grender hopes…

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Repossession looms for buy to let investors because of eviction ban

Reduce buy to let regulation or face a worsening housing crisis – that’s the message from a leading property lawyer. Mary Rouse, from Midlands law firm Wright Hassall, says unless some temporary legislation is revoked – especially the eviction ban – thousands of buy to let landlords will themselves  face possession action by their lenders. She says many landlords – some of whom manage properties as businesses – are under…

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Top Priorities For Tenants Central Housing Group

Letting agents link with critics to demand public cash for renters

ARLA and the NRLA have teamed up with charities – some usually critical of letting agents and landlords – to lobby the government for help for renters A statement from ARLA Propertymark says the organisations are united in believing that maintaining ‘solvent’ tenancies is the best way to support both the rental sector and the economy as a whole. So the organisations – including Shelter, Citizens Advice, Generation Rent and Crisis…

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Database For Rogue Letting Agents Central Housing Group

In full – all the new tenancy notice periods and rules

Agents and landlords must now give tenants six months’ notice before they can evict, except in the most serious of cases, such as incidents of anti-social behaviour and domestic abuse. On Friday the government made the announcement – just a few hours ahead of the start of the Bank Holiday weekend – and the new rules came into effect the next day, Saturday. So from now until March next year…

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Best Buy-To-Let Investment Central Housing Group

New records galore as rental market boom continues

ARLA Propertymark says the number of new prospective tenants continued to rise in July, hitting the highest number on record. The average letting agent branch registered 97 new tenants, compared to 79 on average in June. This breaks the previous record of 88 in January of this year. The number of rental properties available in July also continued to rise, with the number of properties reaching an all-time high for…

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Boris Johnson told: You’ve kicked the rental sector in the teeth

A leading trade body has told Prime Minister Boris Johnson that some landlords face receiving no rent for two years. In a letter to Johnson, the National Residential Landlords Association accuses the government of expecting landlords to subsidise struggling renters and reward those who are wilfully refusing to pay their rent. It is also accused of causing continuing hardship to communities and families suffering anti-social behaviour and domestic violence perpetrated by…

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Evictions ban: agents set out wishlist as landlord costs top £530m

Ahead of the evictions ban being lifted on Sunday, ARLA Propertymark has written to Housing Minister Robert Jenrick, setting out a range of points on behalf of letting agents. The letter, penned by ARLA’s policy and campaigns manager Timothy Douglas, urges the government to stick to its timetable for courts reopening to hear evictions cases from September 21. It is vital that courts hear cases as soon as possible so…

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Landlords slam London Mayor’s call for ‘disaster’ two-year rent freeze

The National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) has slammed London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s call for a rent freeze in the capital. Yesterday, ahead of the eviction ban being lifted from Monday, Khan called on the government to freeze rents in London to prevent evictions caused by Covid-19. The NRLA says rent controls in the capital would be ‘a disaster for tenants’. Khan is requesting that new powers are introduced to prevent…

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Co-Living Rental Central Housing Group

Coronavirus break clauses being demanded by student tenants

Student renters want break clauses automatically included in tenancy agreements to protect them financially in the event of a second wave of Coronavirus. That’s the result of a new survey conducted by websites Money Magpie and Save The Student. The break clause would lapse the rental contract, meaning students required to return home if their university was to close would not be liable for any remaining rent under the tenancy agreement,…

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