Lettings Agency Chief Central Housing Group

Lettings Agency Chief Lists Rent Control Consequences

A lettings agency chief has listed how rent controls have failed across the world.

Writing in The Scotsman, David Alexander – lettings agency chief executive of DJ Alexander, part of the Lomond Group – makes a withering attack on the concept of rent controls now applied by the Scottish Government.

Alexander ridicules the government’s view that only “vested interests” are opposing rent controls.
Alexander says: “The ‘vested interests’ that include Scottish councils (including those run by the SNP), Housing Associations, Scottish Land and Estates, Universities, construction companies, build to rent investors, landlord organisations, letting agents as well as individual and corporate landlords. These individuals and organisations have all warned that this type of legislation has never worked anywhere in the world and that the outcome of such policies is fewer available properties, higher rents, and a shrinking of the rental market.”

And he is no less devastating in his chronicle of how controls have failed internationally.

He continues: “Across the world where similar policies have been implemented the result is always worse for the tenant. In Stockholm it has resulted in eleven year waiting lists, higher rents, and illegal sub-letting; in San Francisco it produced fewer rental properties, poorer housing stock, and increased rents; in Berlin the legislation had to be quickly reversed as it reduced the market by 60 per cent and was subsequently deemed to be illegal and resulted in the largest increase in rent prices in the whole of Germany.”

Alexander concludes by saying that the Scottish Government’s policy represents a lose-lose for tenants and landlords. 

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