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Landlords want tenants claiming benefits to be treated ‘fairly and equally’

The Scottish Association of Landlords (SAL) is calling for an urgent overhaul of how universal credit is paid, with most landlords north of the border wanting to see the housing element of the benefit paid directly to them instead of the tenant.

A new report of the Social Security Committee of the Scottish Parliament recommends that the default position should be that the housing portion of Universal Credit be paid directly to landlords, be that private or social.

The body said this would ensure that those on Universal Credit have equal access to accommodation as opposed to the current situation which sees some landlords reluctant to rent to those on Universal Credit because of potential delays in rent being paid.


But unfortunately the Scottish government refuses to support the measure which most experts believe would increase the availability of private rented homes for those on Universal Credit.

John Blackwood, chief executive of SAL, said: “As the Cabinet Secretary for Social Security and Older People stated during her evidence, we agree that social security is a human right. This is why we support any measure which ensures those receiving Universal Credit are treated equally and have the same access to housing as everyone else.

“The reluctance of the Scottish government to support a simple measure which would help achieve that is deeply disappointing.

“What we are proposing, and the committee report agrees with, is that the default position would be that the housing component of Universal Credit is paid directly to the landlord, private or social, but the tenant would still be able to opt-out if they wanted. This would reduce the risk to landlords of renting to those on Universal Credit and ensure those in receipt of benefits are treated fairly and equally as they deserve to be.

“The government is expected to formally respond to the Social Security Committee’s report over the summer and I hope they will reflect on their conclusions and join private and social landlords as well as charities and others who support this measure so together we can persuade the UK government of our case.”

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    Doesn't surprise me that the SNP government fails to recognise common sense when it sees it. However this still wouldn't persuade me to let to non working benefit scroungers.

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    No benefits No UC No daily curry eaters No single Mums. No foreigners with out Advance Cash Rent.No Students without UK guarantors working and house owner.No pets. Keep it simple.

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    • 18 June 2019 11:39 AM

    They still don't get it do they!?
    You can't force a LL to take on a tenant they don't want to.
    There is no war on so we don't have compulsory billeting!!
    For many LL the business proposition for taking on HB tenants just isn't there.
    It used to be and consequently LL took such HB tenants..
    But for so many reasons now the business case for HB tenants is no longer there.
    It is nothing personal against most HB tenants it is just business.
    Something the Socialist SNP don't seem to understand!!

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    Why would we take on a tenant who is unlikely to pay his / her rent, would be pure madness wouldn't it.

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    Look there is power in numbers , and from the last comment there must be a lot of mad LL. the answer is simple . every landlord who is breathing should not take another benifit tenant .I walk down the street and there are a lot of vacant door ways for them to sleep in.

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    • 19 June 2019 00:02 AM

    Due to the business risks the only way LL might be prepared to take on HB tenants is if Councils underwrite the fecklessness of HB tenants.
    So Councils underwrite all damages and contractual rent arrears for HB tenants UNTIL the tenancy is legally ended.
    That means a surrender letter or an enforced eviction.
    For the FULL contractual rent to be deducted first from UC and paid directly to the LL WITHOUT ANY 'clawback' risk UNLESS the LL can be proven to have been involved in fraud.
    Also for Councils to provide 5 weeks deposit.
    Plus there would be the not inconsiderable issue of paying the market rent.
    This would be achievable by HB and DHP which would need to be arranged BEFORE an AST is signed.


    Perfect arrangement, won't happen though.

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    • 19 June 2019 11:57 AM

    Yep I know but forgive my flights of fantasy..................sometimes I just get carried away!!!!!


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