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Coronavirus: Landlords urged to ‘not evict tenants’ who can’t pay their rent

Landlords are being urged not to evict tenants facing financial hardship as a consequence of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Responding to a petition calling for protections for renters by tenants’ union Living Rent, the housing minister in Scotland, Kevin Stewart, said no landlord should carry out such evictions.

The campaign from Living Rent wants to see a suspension on “any and all evictions in both the private and social rented sector” during the coronavirus pandemic.


It would also like to see a “rent holiday” granted to renters affected by coronavirus. 

In a statement on its website, the union said: “We want to see that this crisis does not make life harder for those that are already suffering under austerity, universal-credit reforms and skyrocketing rent.

“While bankers, landlords and mortgaged homeowners are being supported, the silence of the government regarding tenants and their needs is shocking.”


The Scottish government is now asking landlords to halt such evictions.

Housing minister Kevin Stewart said: “No landlord should evict a tenant because they have suffered financial hardship due to coronavirus and we are actively considering how best this can be addressed.

“This is part of our urgent consideration on what wider measures can be put in place to support people against the economic impacts of coronavirus and further announcements will be made.

“People affected by coronavirus who are concerned about paying their rent can claim Universal Credit from the Department for Work and Pensions which includes support for housing costs, if eligible. The UK Government has introduced some temporary changes to make this easier.”

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Poll: Do you agree that no landlord should evict a tenant because they have suffered financial hardship due to coronavirus?


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    who pays the mortgage and costs if Landlords do not get their rent ???????????????????anyone know ????????????????


    It's only words from the PM......would you trust him?

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    Throughout history, people have been widowed, lost jobs etc. and been evicted. The only difference now is the potential scale of the problem but the principle remains the same. If the welfare state can't help enough, why does it fall at the feet of private landlords to plug the gap?

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    • 17 March 2020 11:07 AM

    Why is it presumed that LL have the liquid resources to make mortgage payments without any rent being paid for 3 months!?
    Even big businesses are saying they will be insolvent if things go on for 3 months without any Govt assistance.

    May I go food shopping etc without paying for it for the next 3 months and then pay over the following 12 months.
    I doubt many supermarkets could survive not being paid for 3 months!!
    So why are LL being picked on yet again!?

    I wish I did have the resources to pay the mortgages for 3 months.
    Frankly I'm s######g myself as to how I'm going to remain not bankrupted if tenants DON'T pay rent!
    MX who are nasty bunch would love to foreclose on me.
    Of course that means the tenants are still homeless.
    Two missed mortgage payments and MX start repossession proceedings.
    No forbearance there!

    • 19 March 2020 23:58 PM

    You deserve it judging from the comments you post here.

    • 21 March 2020 20:50 PM

    Perhaps you have missed, or are simply too dense to have understood, the news that banks will be offering payment holidays to mortgage holders.

    That aside, maybe if you got a proper job instead of leeching off of others you wouldn't be in this position. You are privileged enough to own multiple properties. Your tenants have nothing to fall back on.

    Frankly, I hope your tenants stop paying you, or better yet learn how to build a guillotine and make you their first target. Bourgeoise scum.

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    It's up to the government or local council to pay, if they don't then it's eviction, I am not a charity.

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    • 17 March 2020 18:44 PM

    As a precautionary measure it would be appropriate for all LL to issue S21.
    Not to necessarily enforce but at least the 2 months notice will have been served.
    Then at least the LL could commence the eviction process within 6 months of issue..
    Just seen on Sky a wonk say tenants should approach LL for a rent holiday for 3 months.
    That these supposedly clever people imagine LL are able to offer forbearance for 3 months!!
    DON'T they know that at least 50% of the PRS is mortgaged and requires rent to pay mortgages!?

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    How funny, when I asked if we we're likely to be assisted or where to go for guidance on
    another thread Paul Barratt said that I "should have built up a buffer which you could use for your own domestic circumstances" 

    Why then, are you ####### yourself?

    Our worries are the same, yet, you attacked me for being unbusinesslike.

    I genuinely believed I might get help here.

    • 17 March 2020 20:42 PM

    Because my dear my rents are barely sufficient to cover my costs.
    Ever heard of S24!!!!??
    I charge market rents and can barely survive.
    You choose not to charge market rents and bemoan your situation.
    You simply have no excuse.
    I have as I am doing my best but Govt policies are defeating me and many other LL who had perfectly viable businesses before S24 came along!!

    No opportunity for me to build up a buffer!
    There is no help available by the way unless one of us on here has a magic money tree!!
    You are on your own as we all are.
    LL aren't gonna be helped by this or any other Govt.
    There will be many bankrupted LL.
    I can easily see me being one of them.
    For the Govt that would be great news as they seek to cull small private LL like you and I from the PRS.
    I DON'T believe they are bothered how this is achieved.
    CV19 will be considered by Govt as manna from heaven to eradicate small LL far more quickly than S24.


    You genuinely believe you might get help. dream on Martha, we won't get any help, just stabbed between the shoulder blades as all ways.

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    I may be a lone voice in this but I wouldn't dream of evicting my tenants during this crisis, one of the couples has just had a baby! I have already contacted all my tenants (only 3 properties) to check if their jobs are safe and they will be able to pay the rent, fortunately they've all said they are OK. I have mortgages to pay so it would be a real struggle for me if they couldn't pay the rent, I would have suggested a reduced rent for the period of the crisis which would cover my mortgages.
    If landlords evict their tenants they'll only have to find new ones, which might be difficult during this crisis and the landlord will have council tax to pay unless you can get the empty property rebate. I'm happy with my current tenants and would not want to go through the hassle of finding new ones so I would do all I could to help them if they were struggling.

    • 17 March 2020 21:04 PM

    Your assessment of the circumstances is indeed correct but what is a LL to do without rent being paid.
    You are OK well many other LL AREN'T!
    They may have to attempt to sell and vacant possession is generally accepted as the most effective method to achieve full market value.
    Though we have a virtual storm here that even if wishing to sell because of unviability there won't be a market to sell into!!
    Does the LL therefore let the tenants occupy rent free!?

    Property by its very nature is an illiquid investment.
    It can take time even under normal circumstances to liquidate.
    Even so probably still better than having highly liquid shares etc which have done so well recently!!!!!??

    Many LL will be in an impossible business position largely caused by Govt with S24 etc.
    Somehow many LL will need to subsidise their mortgaged properties for at least 3 months.
    Possibly by remortgaging their own resi homes.
    But I believe that we are facing another CC so no chance to sell unless to cash buyers who will want massive discounts
    So simply not viable for the selling LL.
    All very difficult!


    This is the governments problem, support landlords -- no chance-- tenants will also take the P , it's a hard world out there , dog eat dog, harden up, or fall by the roadside, will anyone have any sympathy for a landlord ? of course not, this is the real world and welcome to it, one good thing about it though, it might wake up the snowflakes and the I'm entitled lot.

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    • 17 March 2020 21:50 PM

    Yep perhaps the LL haters will realise that actually LL are a vitally needed resource.

    Perhaps the hating will stop and actions occur to ensure that LL remain viable.
    Of course I am savvy enough to know that will NEVER occur.
    So I have no regrets on my plans to exit the AST PRS.
    Tough on my tenants of course.
    But Govt doesn't care so neither do I.


    Reading your posts Paul Barrett it sounds like you are not happy being a landlord, therefore why are you still doing it? I don't know how many properties you have and I realise selling up might be difficult in the short term but do you plan to sell up and save yourself from having to deal with annoying tenants!
    Yes we have been battered by the govt and the media but I still see this as being a business and also my pension. It's not very profitable these days but it suits me for the time being. But I feel that if you are going to rent out properties you've got to respect your tenants and treat them as you would want to be treated yourself. I understand that some landlords have bad tenants but I can honestly say in the 20 years I've been doing this I've only had two bad tenants, maybe I've just been lucky! I don't see how anyone can be a landlord if they dislike tenants, as it seems that some people who write on this forum do!!

    • 20 March 2020 10:26 AM

    Karen, you are one of the good ones. Don't change

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    I gave notice to my tenant at the end of February as she has repeatedly not paid rent. The notice period being 2 months on section 21, she is not due to leave until end of April. I am really worried that she will not leave and I won't be able to enforce it because of all the coronovirus issues, even though this is occurring well after her missed payments. I only rent the one property which I used to live in myself so am not commercial and rely on this money . Please does anyone have any advice or insights into this?

    • 18 March 2020 17:34 PM

    Highly unlikely your tenant will vacate at the expiry of the 2 month S21 notice.

    You will have to evict if Govt allows it.
    If not expect to be not paid rent for at least a year.
    Hope you have resources to subsidise your tenants lifestyle.
    If you can't pay any mortgage your property will be repossessed and you will be bankrupted.
    Suggest you get Landlord Action working for you.
    You face a very long and expensive process.
    Any Govt bailout won't apply to you.
    Plus you might be prevented from evicting.
    Your tenant can look forward to about a year of rent free living.
    Good being a LL isn't it!!!?

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    • 18 March 2020 21:27 PM

    @karen letherby

    Yep you are totally correct I am far from happy being a LL or more ESPECIALLY an AST LL.

    Didn't mind that much up until 2015 and then dopey Osborne went and ruined everything with S24!!

    I consider tenants a necessary evil.
    If I could make the same returns on property without them I would.

    As such tenants I have are respected if they comply with their AST..
    Not all of them do!

    Getting rid of them is a time consuming and costly exercise.

    This is why I intend to become a lodger LL.
    I will make roughly the same returns but with none of the hassle of a tenant.
    Getting rid of dud lodgers is easy.
    Plus no silly S24 etc; etc.

    Having over a £million of leverage is a lot of debt to support at the best of times.

    It really isn't worth the hassle.
    I am of course a brilliant LL or so my tenants say!
    But I've had enough of being attacked by dopey Govt legislation.
    Being a good LL has got me nowhere due to rent defaulting tenants.
    Costs are increasing all the time and quite simply the figures make it not worth the hassle anymore.
    If I had a 30 year investment timeline available I may stay the course.
    But.I only have a few years of investment timeline remaining.

    My domestic circumstances facilitate becoming a lodger LL.
    I could let 4 rooms at about £600 pcm each.
    I would have the Room for Rent Allowance available of £7500 which is something.
    I am able to be a guest elsewhere so I will attend my home to collect mail etc and see how my lodgers are doing.
    There is no law that requires a live-in LL to have a bedroom.
    A sofabed will suffice!
    No mandatory HMO licensing required as only 4 occupiers.

    Have thought about possibly doing AirBnB but would struggle to do this legally so have discounted the idea.

    So I will be a LL hopefully once I have stopped letting to tenants and got rid of all my properties.
    Just my new occupants will be lodgers who are far less hassle in a nice big 4 bed house.

    But I doubt this will ve achievable due to the price of such properties.
    So I will remain a guest occupant for the foreseeable future.

    I won't miss being an AST LL at all!!

    • 19 March 2020 23:57 PM

    You're living the dream Paul. Though seeing some lump sleeping on the sofa might put off potential lodgers.

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    • 20 March 2020 14:05 PM

    Shows how much you know!
    I have domestic circumstances such that I would rarely be at my PPR.
    So could easily have 4 lodgers.
    Income is what I'm now after.
    I've given up on Capital Growth prospects.
    In my area lodgers are prepared to pay £600 to £700 for a room.
    So imagine 4 rooms 4 lodgers

    Now who will know I have 4 lodgers and even if they do how much they pay?
    Of course the total amount they pay in CASH every month will never exceed the Annual £7500 RFRA.

    There system beaten and my time to make loads of tax free money will have definitely come!!

    £2400 x 12 = Nearly 30 k tax evaded not avoided free!!!.......Nice!!
    Now all I have to do is get out of being an AST LL and buy a 4 bed house.
    Have you seen the price of 4 bed houses!!?
    So Portugal is Plan B.
    Amazing what you can get there.
    If I was to be a lodger LL I believe I need to lower my sights.
    I'd struggle to buy a 3 bed house as my home.
    But irrespective I will be selling all my rental properties.
    I have decided to go.

    • 21 March 2020 15:58 PM

    Good. Also might I suggest you remove the picture of your ugly mug. It will stop your face and name being posted on bad landlord forums.

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    Paul reading through your pathetic comments ,landlords are not poeple that have been given properties ,they are hard working sacrificing poeple trying to invest in their future ,not like you lazy big arsed poeple waiting for gifts from the state so you can surviive ,instead of moaning at what poeple earn get out there and get a second and third job ,and if you want to help the needy give them rooms in your house free of charge and feed them too ,or is this beyond your state fleecing persona.
    I am fed up with being the person who has to lose out ,why should i , working my way up earning a pittance i have sacrificed my life ,and put money to the side and bought property ,you can do the same ,oh i forgot you want it for free.


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