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Landlords condemned for ‘quick buck’ shift to short lets

A council leader has criticised landlords in a tourist hotspot for evicting long term tenants and switching to higher paying Airbnb renters.

Torbay council leader Steve Darling says he has received emails from hospital workers evicted because their landlords wanted to make “a quick buck” via short lets.

He is reported by the Devon Live website as telling fellow councillors: “We were very weak in Torbay, with low levels of social housing for people on low incomes, and now we’ve got the pandemic, and the impact of the changes in society that we are now seeing. We have very few options for quick solutions.”


The website claims rents are increasing across Torbay, with hard-to-find three-bedroomed properties fetching over £1,000 a month, and attracting up to 50 applicants for each vacancy.

An online search shows more than 300 Airbnb ‘stays’ are on offer in the Torbay area during August, with that number still increasing.

“Private rents are unaffordable for many low-income families in Torbay” according to Darling.

“Households on low incomes are finding it particularly difficult to meet rental increases, due partly to welfare reforms and the other economic pressures, now compounded by shift in the housing market.

“More households are also remaining in private rented accommodation because they can’t afford to buy their own homes.”

You can see the full story here.

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

  • George Dawes

    Public sector pontificating to the private about something they haven’t got a clue about

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    Since when have BTL landlords been a charity, homing low income families is the councils responsibility, Torbay is not a very nice area these days mainly do to the council there

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    Why should landlords not do what they like with their own properties? If they were treated better and fairly there wouldn't be this mass exodus. I will NOT be taking any more tenants on...EVER.. I am selling up, one by one I've had enough.. The couple of holiday lets I have are a lot less hassle. I'm not a charity, I'm a business... Just a pity HMRC and the councils don't see it that way.


    Spot on Shane. I’m in a selling spree and moving into Holiday lets. The constant rubbish thrown at us and the virtual forfeit of the property to the tenant whilst still having the responsibility has all but destroyed this industry for me.

  • Tony Egan

    Perhaps if us private rental sector landlords were treated fairly by HMRC we wouldn't be exiting the market or moving to holiday lets. Or dare I even mention that the 'council leader' who is quoted gets it together and provides council housing...oh no that won't happen because huge amounts of them have been sold at a discount!!

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    I have every sympathy with anyone who can't afford to stay exactly where they want.

    The posh hotels in Park Lane and elsewhere have priced me out of the poshest areas and I am having to think about investing in Cannes or Nice as Monaco is just too expensive for a second home now.

    I have found that I suffer from chronic fatigue if I even attempt any work and am allergic to my own sweat.

    I find words like effort, work, strive etc. adversely affect my mental health and make me need to lie down to recover.

    Why should I have to accept real world economic facts? I thought all parties, red or blue, were promising me unlimited fruits from the magic money tree? Glad I was too indolent to bother to vote for any of them!

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    Once again the PRS is being mistaken for Social Housing! Given the support there has been for LLs in recent years (none) is it surprising that LLs feel no duty to tenants? I am making as much money as possible before selling up and leaving the sector completely.

  • Theodor Cable

    Quite right.
    PRS is a business, and a business it must remain.

    Just a shame we do not have any professional institutions to support LLs........

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    Got to pay for all those extra bills and taxes now foisted onto landlords by government and councils. I am still paying 100% council tax on an empty property that I would dearly love to have tenanted, so I have absolutely no sympathy for any council whatsoever.


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