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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Petition calls for ‘rent holiday’ to support self-isolating tenants

The government is under growing pressure to consider doing more to protect tenants from the threat of eviction during the coronavirus pandemic, as well as introduce a “rent holiday” for those who are unable to work and struggling to pay their bills at this time. 

A petition launched by The Acorn union calling for a “rent holiday” and to protect tenants from the threat of eviction has gathered more than 12,500 signatures. 

The Acorn, which supports tenants, workers and residents, is urging the housing secretary Robert Jenrick to act after its petition gained strong support. 

It wants to see the government to enact temporary rent freezes for renters suffering with the virus or self-isolating for the period of their self-isolation and recovery.

The group also wants an immediate halt on section 21 and section 8 evictions.

A significant number of tenants are either self-employed, working on zero-hours contracts or likely to be entitled only to statutory sick pay of £94.25 if they cannot work, meaning there is a risk many will not be able to pay their rent.

Acorn wants renters to be given the same rights as people who are unable to pay their mortgage as a result of the pandemic, with several high street banks offering those struggling with home loans repayment holidays.

A government spokesperson said: “The government has always been clear that our priority is to put people first, which is why there is support in place to help affected people and minimise any social and economic disruption.

“We’ve announced a range of measures to support people and communities, including a £500m fund for households experiencing financial hardship and ensuring statutory sick pay is available from the first day people take off work.”

Poll: Do you think that there should be a ‘rent holiday’ to help support tenants who cannot work or have to self-isolate during the coronavirus pandemic?

PLACE YOUR VOTE BELOW

  • icon

    Is there going to be a "mortgage holiday"? How about a "gas and electricity holiday"? Maybe also a "repairs holiday"? I don't think so and clearly whoever is proposing this has not thought through the implications

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    You must be able to read minds. I was logging in to write very similar words. We have a growing amount of people in this country at the first sign of adversity want the burden lumped on others who have there own burdens and commitments to. National emergency aid should always start with those who govern.

     
  • Mark Wilson

    Do most Landlords think that most tenants will continue to pay their rent? Do most Landlords expect that the courts will evict people until normality returns?

     G romit

    There is a thing called the welfare state which is in place & working, designed to help people in need with housing costs, food, bills, etc.

     
  • icon

    Yet more HATE CRIME from acorn ,many small landlords would be bankrupted if they had no income to pay their mortgages ,they clearly have no problem with landlords children going hungry,
    Interesting they don't say that councils shouldn't charge council tax or utility companies not charge for energy or supermarkets give free food
    The mindless bigotry prejudice and hatred spewed out by these hate mongers aimed at landlords and their children is truly breathtaking

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    j red says council tax holiday is not being considered

     
  • icon

    Not sure if the government or legislation need to be mentioned in this context. Surely individual landlords can themselves much such decisions on a case by case basis. And one hopes that they would be sympathetic to genuine cases brought to their attention. Which actually should be the case in normal times too. (Who are the 'Acorn Union' anyway? - never heard of them ……..)

  • icon

    I wondered when this would start. Of course landlords are the easy target and are expected to keep paying mortgages, maintenance, letting fees, service fees, ground rent, etc. I will listen sympathetically however will point out that if I don't pay the mortgage, eventually the bank will repossess and they will be evicted anyway. Anyway, not all those who are isolating are without income. I'm still going to paid as I can work-from-home. I will understand that freelancers and those whose physical presence is required at their place of work may not be paid but why should I become a charity? If this sounds harsh I welcome comments!

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    and then the house will be on the market, contributing to excess supply. Happy days.

     
  • icon

    "The government is under growing pressure"

    What? From a bunch of landlord hating nutters?

    I think the government have a bit more sense than to worry about left wing pressure groups!

  • icon

    Will Banks give LL's a repayment Holiday first, otherwise where does the money come from, it would be great if everyone didn't have to pay for anything, that would go well, total collapse.
    Mark my friend, are you sure you are a private LL or are you a Benefits LL only who only house persons
    that can't loose the job they never had but the Rent will be paid for them anyhow.

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    I doubt that Mark is a landlord at all!

     
  • icon

    I assume acorn will pay my landlord costs !?????????????????
    do they have a form I can complete to make a claim ! ???

  • Matthew Payne

    Its not a 5 minute job to do this anyway, and the worst may well be over before they had time to anything about it. They would be passing legislation to interfere in existing legally binding contractual arrangements between 2 parties, that would have a knock on effect in the supply chain. The lawyers would need to pour over the implications of such a move for weeks and no doubt be challenged in the courts. I am sure most lenders up and down the land would not support such a move either unless it was somehow underwritten with government cash. Thats the only way I could see it getting off the ground. 3 month rent roll would be £4 billion. Do they have the appetite?

  • David Lester

    So when my houses are repossessed where will these tenants live? Someone wake-up and smell the coffee, Landlords are a business not a charity! we have financial commitments and families to support.

  • icon

    What a stupid Idea, the esiest, cheapest and the most sensible way would be for social security to fund for those tenants affected by this virus. Any other Brian wave like this will result in tenants losing their homes and less landlords meaning more tenants on the road.

  • icon

    Reduce my mortgage payments, my costs to renovate a house after a tenant leaves (unable to claim fairly because of DPS arbitration) make it free to do tenant checks for landlords!! Gas checks insurance all reduced oh and get rid of that ridiculous Section 24 tripwire make it criminal act for non payment after this is done and I will GLADLY pass the savings on to the tenant

    Remember a mortgage holiday will be interest rolled up and added to the mortgage. Tenants will not pay for 3 months and walk out cos they know there will be arrears and start again at no cost to themselves whilst we are prevented at perusing in court in years to come

  • icon

    Actually the government doesn't have to do anything, just let the likes of acorn ,shelter and generation rent put out the hate propaganda until even good tenants stop paying their rent, then who are landlords going to turn to get their rent the courts ??? no the government will instruct the courts to stop what they consider non priority cases and landlords won't even get a hearing date for two years

  • Kathryn Everson

    A completely ill thought through request. As always, landlords with good tenants, will do their utmost I am sure during these difficult times for everyone, to want to support their tenants, but the practicality of enforcing a private landlord to do this when, this may be the Landlords only source of income (like myself) and they often have mortgages, insurances etc. to pay themselves to maintain this property, which they are also legally contracted to adhere to, is in my opinion ridiculous and not enforcable. Support the tenants to fund their rent if need be or ensure that landlords also have a right to defer mortgage payments without further costs, or ensure such costs can rightfully be passed on to the tenant as the same for a homeowner

  • Mark Wilson

    I am just standing back and looking at the reality.

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    • L C
    • 17 March 2020 14:58 PM

    A rent holiday is fine, as long as the landlords lender offers the same.

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    What if the landlord relies on his rental funds as his monthly income

    Mortgage holiday doesn’t help him?

     
  • Suzy OShea

    Mark Wilson,

    The reality is more homelessness and a drop in property values as more private landlords are forced by debt to sell. Only large companies have the reserves to keep going for three months or more! And who is to say that this epiDemic will not return next year?

  • Paul Barrett

    Globalisation is dead.
    We will see a compkete change to the world order.
    Onshoring will start occurring.
    Yes you might be able to have things cheaply made in China but pretty pointless when things like CV 19 strikes.
    Return to nation states with their own borders to restrict movement.
    One Chinaman has destroyed the world economy.
    We need more than Chinese walls in the future.
    We need proper ones with machine guns to stop illegals entering our borders.
    Bit like the like the old Iron Curtain days.

    Trump has the right idea.
    Make the UK Great Again!

    Open up those coal mines with 300 years of coal; get fracking with a vengeance.
    Make energy available at subsidised prices for industry etc and they will produce here and not in China.

    Products might cost a bit more being home produced but worth it so as not to be reliant on China for everything.
    The world order will have to change.
    It certainly couldn't cope with repeat CV19 type pandemics.

    Free movement is dead.
    ........thank god.
    Just going to be very tricky for LL.
    Consolidation is the key here.
    Become more financially resilient.
    DON'T concern if there are millions of homeless tenants.
    That is the Govt fault with their stupid S24 ; S21 abolishment etc.

    icon

    You ridiculous man.
    You're a parody Paul.

     
  • icon

    Mortgage holiday if fine BUT.. what if the LL relies on the profit earnings from his rentals as his monthly income? A mortgage holiday doesn’t help him?

  • icon

    What about Acorn taking a holiday?

  • icon

    And how many tenants will use this as an excuse to not pay rent, if the government or councils pays me the rent then I will not evict, in all other cases I will evict, I am not a charity, shelter is though, knock on their door.

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    I think majority will as they will see this as an opportunity not to pay and just spend it instead. We are all gonna learn about human behaviour over the coming months

     
  • icon

    Three month mortgage holiday announced however not clear it will cover BTL mortgages!!!
    Tenants are already asking if we will offer same (and this is before this evenings announcement) Remember we are only allowed to charge so much for rents in arrears. Not paying rent will be seen as the cheapest loan available to sub prime credit level tenants. Absolute disaster

  • icon

    Reading these comments is absolutely shocking and very distressing, if there is a mortgage break from the banks then there definitely should be a break for renters who fall ill and cannot attend work, if this is your main source of income maybe offer a temporary reduced rate, as you will be getting the break from paying your mortgage. Someone earlier wrote we learn about human behaviour in coming months, that for me is a real eye opener of those that see money is more important than the health of people. Absolutely disgusting, let’s work together.

    Paul Barrett

    These comments are ENTIRELY realistic.
    Being a LL especially a leveraged one is a very hard-nosed business.
    That isn't through choice it is just the simple reality of being a leveraged LL.
    Such LL very much operate a just in time business model.
    That is the rent is paid and then the mortgage is.

    Few leveraged LL are able to offer any forbearance.
    Of course if LL are offered mortgage holidays then most LL will pass on that facility to Tenants.
    But and it is a big but LL will be extremely concerned about the effects on their credit files should lenders report missed mortgage payments as would normally be the case.
    Missed payments would severely impact on the credit status of LL; the damage of which would last for years and would severely impact upon the LL future business possibilities.

    Business is business; it is nothing personal.
    Leveraged LL have little alternative than to behave in hard nosed business fashion.
    50% of the PRS uses leverage and are most unlikely to be in a position to offer forbearance.

    That is the WHOLE point of the BTL mortgage market.
    It is based on rental income criteria NOT LL personal non-rental income.

    If Govt facilitates mortgage holidays for LL then most would pass on that forbearance to tenants.
    LL that are better able to offer forbearance are those LL that comprise 50% of the PRS that are not leveraged.
    Though many of these LL rely on the rental income as their sole income.
    So many of these leverage free LL are NOT in a position to offer forbearance.
    In light of the current situation perhaps there is a social and business case for restricting any future BTL lending to a maximum of 50% LTV.
    A 50% mortgage would be a lot easier to service than a 75% LTV one which is currently the industry standard LTV.

    Of does Govt ban BTL mortgages which will destroy the PRS and probably cause a property crash!?

    Possibly there could be a case made that from now on no new IO BTL mortgages will be advanced.

    So for all new BTL mortgages to be no more than 50% LTV and must be on C & R basis.

    This would substantially de-risk the PRS and require considerably more investment to achieve a BTL property.

    When tenants could struggle with rent payments if LTV were lower this would reduce the financial stress on LL.

    Consequently even with shortfalls on rent there would still be sufficient to pay the mortgage.
    Of course the elephant in the room here for sole trader LL who comprise about 25% of the PRS is that they have such mortgage interest regarded as INCOME!!!!!!!!!???
    Courtesy of the most bonkers tax policy ever introduced by a Govt with the possible exception of the Window Tax; namely S24!!
    Mortgaged LL now need to pay more tax with fictitious income.
    NOT easy for such LL to offer any form of forbearance in such circumstances!

    The business model for mortgaged sole trader LL is a very tenuous business.
    Few such LL have cash assets to subsidise a tenant.
    Therefore come what may tenants must pay rent and if not they should vacate.
    Then it will be for LL to source tenants who can and will pay rent.
    Obviously that won't be easy.
    But that is the business mortgaged sole trader LL are in.
    They understand the business risks of being such a LL.






















     
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    • 25 March 2020 10:12 AM

    you are totally right Ian. This crisis is also going to be a wake up call that we can't have hald the population renting off the others for the "pension" of the latter. wake up and smell the coffee.

     
  • icon

    And what if rental income is the Landlord's ONLY income....Does he/she get the same from the Government in compensation, or do they just have to take the hit, which the same as being made redundant with no pay or social security.

    IE: ZILCH income from now to September according to The labour party!!!!

  • Matthew Payne

    Ian, I think you miss the point on risk and the commitments faced by a landlord. A 3 month mortgage holiday will just be that, and the lender will be very robust about any defaults and have the power to remedy pretty quickly. Moreover, then balance of the mortgage will increase as will then the amount of interest paid over the term. Who pays for that?

    A 3 month rent holiday will inevitably result in rent arrears when after the 3 months, many tenants will not be in a position or choose not to pay the outstanding balance owed. Landlords will have little remedy through the courts as court time will be scarce in the next 12 months.

    It doesnt also address the issue that the rent also pays for ground rent, service charges, sinking funds, insurance and maintentance where there will be no payment holidays.

    Finally it doesnt acknowledge that rent is also an income for many landlords, no different to interest on savings, or dividends on shares. A mortgage holiday doesnt replace that balance.

    The net result will be when life returns to normal is many tenants wont have paid their rent in full, but many landlords will actually have larger mortgages that still need paying. It is a recipe for disaster. Many excellent tenant/landlord relationships will be ruined as a result, many section 21s will be served as a result and everyone will go through a lot of unecessary expense and upheaval for something I dont believe is necessary. I dont believe there are as many destitute tenants out there who dont have the ability to pay next months rent with an income that same month, most employers will allow home working or pay sick leave, and many tenants have income protection. The number who would genuinely need this 3 month rent holiday is very very small indeed, but I fear many would take advantage of it. It would make more sense to allow landlords and tenants to find their own agreements on any delayed payments for those few, and I dont think there are many landlords who would not be sympathetic to any genuine cases where they have a good tenant they want to keep.

    icon

    Exactly it’s not a like for like proposal. We will ultimately have to pay weather tenant decides or not

     
  • icon

    I am 54 and cannot work because of ill health. I have 3 mortgaged rental properties which provide me with an income of £1000 per month. That is my only income. I buy family food , run a little car
    and look after my children on this money. Who the hell is going to help me when I have zero income and mortgages to pay???
    One tennant has just messaged me with a crying/laughter emoji asking for a rent holiday. I'm tempted to respond by asking them to leave.
    Please can those of you wilth knowledge and experience start a response to this madness??

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    • 25 March 2020 10:13 AM

    if you cannot work how can you provide a service to your tenants?

     
  • icon

    I always try to help out my Tenants who are my Customers and wonderful people in the main, even some see me like family. Its time for Government to step up to the mark and put those Lobby Charity in their place, the don't supply the property have no in put just sit on the fence and do as much damage as possible to private Sector Housing, that we supply at no cost to Government imagine that and hated for the free Service that we provide now that no fees. I am in favor of free period or reduced Rent at this difficult time to help out the Tenants who are not made of bags of money. However, I need to see a gesture from Government to support us and give credit where its due, its very simple to do & need not cost Gov' anything, just stop giving our taxes to big Developers and level the field. They have £500m to give away to people experience hardship, nothing for us and we don't need anything only give us back what we had, our Deposits, Scrap 'How to Rent' rubbish that was never required, repeal 2015 De-Regulation Act that was never needed, Revert letting Law back to Civil Law, Retain Section 21 and remove the shackles, reinstate Section 24. Remove HM0 for single House let on one Tenancy where no individual Rooms are Let, I never let rooms yet I am lumbered with this Burden.

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    Nice thought Michael, but never going to happen is it, government / councils are our enemies, their doing, why would I help an enemy

     
  • Romualda Milewska

    My tenant should have eviction but the court is closed - he doesn't pay for renting for a long time and he won't pay now - I pay all the utilities - and he destroying the apartment and is happy that there is coronavirus - I have lawyer for this case but everything is close - what i can do ?

  • Daniela Provvedi

    Romualda, I feel sorry for you. I'm not sure you can do anything until this covid-19 problem blows over.
    It's problems like this that people aren't aware of. People think it's the LL who are the bad ones. Pi**es me off!!

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    Agreed, for every 1 rouge landlord there are at least 10 rouge tenants

     
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    • 25 March 2020 10:07 AM

    @andy when is the last time you rented?

     
  • Paul Barrett

    I believe it is slowly dawning on many LL how vulnerable they are to tenants not paying rent.
    The already dysfunctional eviction process has been made even worse with evictions being banned.
    Without the full rent coming in LL wil struggle.

    As this situation becomes more apparent many LL will realise this game is far too risky with the many untrustworthy tenants.
    Even RGI if achievable looks like being banned from claims by insurers.
    If you have a BTL mortgage which is 50% of the PRS then you are pretty much stuffed unless Govt will pay the full rent.
    Many LL aren't even covering costs especially those subject to S24.
    Will Govt cover the costs of S24 that LL are required to do with fictitious income!!??

    I'm afraid this is Armageddon for the PRS.
    Time for many LL to sell up or diversify from AST letting.

    Many LL will be bankrupted as banks will have no sympathy with BTL or LTB mortgage default.
    2 missed payments and they will repossess.
    They will sell at auction and come after the LL for any shortfall.
    Being a Mortgaged LL is a very risky business as many LL are only now realising.

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    • 25 March 2020 10:08 AM

    yes sell up. the properties and locations will not disappear, you did not provide them. Then housing will become affordable again and BTLers will have to do productive work. e.g. in the fields, as elderly farmers get hospitalised by covid-19

     
  • icon

    My tenant always finds reasons not to pay, Gr8 so 3 months of my income is gone who is going to pay, some off our rents are our income, my tenant owe me £100 from last year and failed to pay that, what makes us think they will pay the 3 months in instalments, now ill have to take a loan out to cover me for 3 months

  • icon

    More intervention by Government that don't understand relationship between LL & Tenant just pouring oil on the fire, 3 months where no eviction process can start in a green light not to pay. I have a number of Tenants in arrears already before this Corona and was trying to work with the Tenant as I always do try to keep the whole situation on track, now a bolt out of the blue undermines any little negotiation rights I had / blanket restriction. I have Evicted a few Tenants with Court Orders in the past but only as a very last resort, for instance like owing me 12 months Rent on a complete House (while I went to Work to pay the loan to keep a roof over their heads)and that was my last eviction in 2003 so the idea that LL gets rid of Tenants at the drop of a hat is nonsense and in any case it takes 6 to 9 months to get your property back at best of times, so why this knee jerk legislation. Incidentally I got the Court Order for the amount but never recovered a penny + it cost me £1500. legals + vat.

  • icon

    Start all the paperwork and the CCJs and all that stuff from now, so you be ready for day 1 when it returns to normal

    AND - Tell your tenants they will be out as soon as the 3 months is over.

    Tough on them, but who cares?

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    • 25 March 2020 10:05 AM

    who will care about you when your rental income dries up and your BTLs become worthless, with an attitude like that?

     
  • icon
    • T L
    • 22 March 2020 19:39 PM

    What if a private landlord does not have a mortgage on the property they are letting? How will they be compensated by the Government for lost rent if tenants can not pay?

    icon

    Well we will not be compensated, but the rent payments are only deferred they will still be due for payment once the tenant returns to work, I will expect these tenants to make extra payments each month to slowly pay off the monies due, if they do not I will not hesitate to take county court action.

     
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    • 25 March 2020 10:10 AM

    do some productive work or sign on

     
  • icon
    • 25 March 2020 09:59 AM

    Comments above are disgusting. Agree with Ian. Consider that if "landlords" (such a medieval term when you think about it) get a mortgage deferment for 3 months, the same mortgage (more or less with a bit more interest) is serviced with 3 extra rental payments. Why should society pass this large regressive bung to landlords? Already a privileged group, let's face it leeching off the tenants. For all those saying "what about my income", how about doing some productive work rather than sitting back and sponging off renters?

    icon

    What work do you do Nick ?

     
    icon

    I am a landlord and I provide clean and affordable housing to 5 families that cannot afford to buy a property. Yes I am doing this to make a decent living for myself in retirement but I am hardly leeching off tenants!

     
    icon

    foad?

     
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    I teach.

     
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    Since I can't afford a house locally (at least before the crash now in train) I have to rent off a guy with several properties. This did not used to be allowed - you could only have one mortgage. Saner times. He does not "provide" this property except in the sense of not calling the police to kick me out, a bit like the service a mafioso provides in its protection racket. He did not build it and it would still be there if he disappeared. The only service is things I could easily do much better myself like get the plumber in. Funny old world.

     
    icon

    @Gordon Brown
    Ask your tenants if they see things the way you do.

     
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    @terry
    You know what, I have been thinking the same thing.

     
  • icon

    Hi, Nick. B seems like you had a bad experience with Renting and I am sorry for that. However. I think you are so misguided if its that easy & such a doddle being a Landlord, please become one I can't wait to see how you are going to spend all this imaginary spare time while being so privileged leeching off others, good luck with that.

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    I wouldn't want to, I prefer doing productive work. I've nothing against a professional landlord providing a decent service for a small charge. But that is far from the UK market reality which seems largely populated by BTL chancers, operating in a hopelessly inadequate regulatory environment, and profiting from a house price bubble and minimal taxes on unearned income. The bubble thankfully seeming to have burst, but who knows if the govt. freeze initiated today may slow its inevitable collapse.

     
  • icon

    I was afraid I would not be able to delete my account but it seems you guys did it for me. Seems critical debate is not welcomed here, or any dissenting views on BTL etc. Explain this then: the exact same property in London rents out for a multiple of its South Wales counterpart. What difference in service is the landlord providing that accounts for this? My last LL spent most of his time cruising up and down the Thames as far as I could make out, funded by his 12 BTLs. I don't remember much "service" being provided, other than to employ an EA that took 2 weeks min to fix anything. As if I couldn't do better than that myself!

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    Nick, you are very welcome to comment on here, and entitled to air your views, we are all entitled to our opinions .

     
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    what happened to my account then? ;-)

     
  • icon

    Well, that was fun. think I'll go and sign the Acorn petition now (thanks for providing the link). Bye everyone and good luck offloading your empty BTLs what with the tenants going back to Mum and Dad now. It's been a blast. But all good things must come to an end, like mass transfer of income from renters to BTL landlords.

  • icon

    try shelters website--it welcomes morons

  • icon

    You couldn't make this up, how dim witted do you have to be to say why does london rent cost multiples of south wales rent ?
    Well let me think !! perhaps it may have something to do with the fact that a £40,000 house in south wales , would cost £500,000 in london ,
    So if we assume a 20% deposit in london and wales thats a £400,000 mortgage in london and a £32,000 mortgage in wales
    So as not to overload nick's brain , pop along to your local friendly building society nick and ask them to lend you £400,000 for the same monthly interest payment as a £32,000 loan
    My six year old granddaughter has a better maths skills
    I suppose we should be grateful if this Muppet had brain cells they could be really dangerous

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    I don't think that there are many £40,000 houses left in South Wales?
    You will be surprised to know that a large semi-detached house overlooking Roath Park Lake in Cardiff recently sold for over £800,000.
    Where I live in Caerleon, smallish 3 bed semis are selling for nearly £300,000.
    Did you get your figures from the Second World War archive?

     
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