Court backlogs and eviction curbs to dominate 2021 – Propertymark

The new chief executive of Propertymark has outlined what he sees as the main challenges for the rental sector for 2021.

In a statement to the National Residential Landlords Association, Tim Balcon says: “The current ban on evictions will remain in place until the end of January, continuing to impact landlords who are dealing with ongoing rent arrears.

“This will also add further pressure on the courts which are managing a backlog of cases and we expect that, when the ban lifts, there will be a delay in cases going to court.
“It’s also likely that many tenants continue to be impacted financially by Covid-19 which will have a knock-on impact on paying their rent.”

And he warns that despite the Brexit deal there remains uncertainty surrounding the requirements for European tenants around travel, work and rent in the UK.

However, Balcon insists the rental market is in resilient form as the New Year beckons.

He says the supply of rental accommodation was the highest on record in 2020 with an average of 203 properties managed per branch.

Agents also reported that the number of tenants experiencing rent hikes had fallen this year to 36 per cent from 44 per cent last year, due to the ongoing impact of Covid-19 on individuals’ income and finances.

But he concludes: “However, we are optimistic that housing has taken a priority in recent months. The government reopened the housing market in early May, before any other sectors, and have acknowledged its crucial role in driving forward the economy. Therefore, we are hopeful they will continue to support the market despite these challenges.”

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