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What’s your investment strategy? Martin Lewis issues urgent advice for landlords

Housing market activity has plummeted over the past week or so and looks set for another volatile period ahead, as the implications of an escalating coronavirus outbreak spooks buyers, sellers, landlords, and renters. 

As the property industry grapples with questions over the impact of the Covid-19 virus, Money Saving Expert founder Martin Lewis has attempted to provide some guidance on how coronavirus will affect private landlords and renters. However, he opened his latest episode of the Ask Martin Lewis Podcast by explaining that “we are in an unprecedented situation”. 

He went on to explain that there are many things that he simply “doesn’t have the answer to” at this moment in time, adding that his advice could well change in a matter of hours. 


But he did have some advice for buy-to-let landlords and private renters, which you may find helpful. 

Addressing landlords, Lewis said: “I would certainly say that for big landlords who can afford it, or who have multiple properties out there, it would be a good idea right now to work out what your policy is. How are you going to treat people? Think of the long term, not the short term. 

“Allowing people to have short term payment holidays to defer their rent or even just saying ‘I’m going to drop your rent for the moment’ if it’s necessary.”

Lewis advised landlords against evicting tenants during the coronavirus pandemic. 

He continued: “Look, landlords who kick people out right now – it’s not that easy to kick someone out – are going to struggle to find new tenants. “And if you’ve got a long term good tenant, we all understand the situation. 

“This isn’t people who are playing hard and fast and loose with their finances. These are people who are in a struggling financial dynamic.

“I think I’m just going to have to keep using the word – it’s the word of the day – forbearance. It’s what we all need to do right now. Forbearance and a responsible attitude and no game playing on either side. But I can’t give you more than that.”

You can listen to the Ask Martin Lewis podcast by clicking here

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Poll: Are you prepared to potentially grant your tenants a short-term payment holiday if it’s necessary?


  • icon

    I would help my tenants,but this must be backed up by mortgage holiday too and a relax on maintenance and other costs,How can landlords cover their costs ???????????? when no rent is paid.?
    Big landlords can cope ,but I have only 4 BTL's and would be hit hard !
    I feel some tenants will start to take the p***

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    • 18 March 2020 10:43 AM

    Here here.......
    Common sense.
    Love it.

  • icon

    If Mr Lewis will dip into his millions to pay then that's fine. Will he do that? Err..of course not.

  • Tom Purcell

    This is when our customers picking the right provider (us) and us picking the right customers (hopefully, fingers crossed and all that!) means that we will have sensible and fair discussions. We will play nicely and we expect them to do the same because that's why we gave them the keys in the first place!

  • Suzy OShea

    So far, no banks are offering mortgage holidays on BTLs!

    So to survive, LLs have to take on large loans to keep going for how long, we don't know!

  • icon

    My one BTL was instantly sublet by a fraudster (who used false ID to secure my property) to a family who have since caused antisocial problems for neighbours and hasn't been paying rent for the last 2 months. I am taking the tenant (who actually lives in his own house miles away) to court for non payment of rent and subletting.
    I don't see why coronavirus hysteria should get in the way of this. These guys were a bunch of fraudsters. Every situation is different!!! Government are all twats.

    Daniela Provvedi

    Good luck, Larry, I really mean it. 👍🏻
    If you could slap a CCJ on both parties, I would do that too.

  • icon

    Well on the basis that the Government will not allow a Landlord to commence evicting a tenant who can't pay their rent as a consequence of losing their means of earning due to Covid-19 for a period of 3 months we have no choice but to accept a rent holiday. My understanding though is that Landlords with a BTL mortgage will also qualify for a mortgage holiday to hopefully balance things out. Fingers crossed neither will be necessary!


    If your mortgage balances your rent you're not making any income!

  • icon

    It seems Mr lewis thinks LL has no bills or mortgages to pay or worry about on the homes they have provided tenants. This is living in cuckoo land, I thought the guy had more commence sense than that.
    So realty is if LL gets no rent how are the mortgages and other costs going to be covered, by the magic money tree!. Very short term might be manageable but longer no way for most of us little guys.
    And when the mortgage company demands their payments and there is none, the usual step is to take back the house and then the tenants are on the street!


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