One of the leading industry suppliers has given a warning to government that continual regulation and legal changes restricting landlords will backfire, with tenants the real victims.
Andy Halstead - HomeLet & Let Alliance chief executive - says that with almost a quarter of adults in the UK now privately renting, the sector’s importance is understated by those who don’t understand how vital it is.
“We all agree that the industry works best when balancing the needs of all parties, critically between landlords and their tenants. The common misconception is that increases in rents are solely driven by unscrupulous landlords trying to maximise profits. That is simply not true” insists Halstead.
“Landlords have been hit by a sustained raft of legislative changes, which mean that their costs to let property have had to increase. With the Tenant Fees Act as an example, costs are ultimately passed on to tenants through higher rents – the same group who should have benefitted most from that legislation.
“The ban on all tenant evictions and plans to abolish Section 21 may prompt some landlords to consider exiting the market when they’re able to, causing yet more strain on property supply.”
He believes that buy to let will continue to be an excellent long-term investment, but the pandemic has amplified some of the issues that both landlords and tenants are facing.
“The reality is that once the furlough scheme ends, millions of people could potentially be facing unemployment at the same time as tackling the most expensive rental market on record.
“The country risks a deepening crisis if policy change aimed at restoring balance to the market is not urgently pursued.”
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