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Graham Awards


All-inclusive rent deals have to be re-thought - lettings chief

The cost of living crisis and soaring fuel bills mean landlords may have to rethink the concept of all-inclusive rents.

That’s the view of David Alexander, chief executive officer of DJ Alexander Scotland - part of the London’s Group - who says rent increases are likely to be necessary.

“Landlords who offer all-inclusive rents may have to re-think their position. With utilities already rising at unprecedented levels and forecast to increase again in the Autumn it will be very hard to keep increasing rents to meet these greater costs. 


“It is currently more essential than ever that landlords, investors, and agents should take care in explaining the reasons for rent increases whilst tenants, their representative organisations, and politicians must also take a realistic approach and understand the necessity for rising rents. 

“Rental prices must rise to keep up with inflation and such increases are entirely necessary to cover greater costs if the private rental sector is to remain viable.”

He continues: “Highlighting rent rises in isolation misses the point that all goods and services are currently increasing at a higher-than-normal rate and rents are simply no different than any other market.  

“All goods and services, must rise each year by at least inflation just to remain static.

“… Rents will increase substantially more in the coming year. This is not just because of skyrocketing inflation and the cost-of-living crisis, but to a shortage of stock and growing demand. We are seeing the welcome return of EU nationals to fill jobs, but this places an enormous pressure on the private rented sector which is the biggest supplier of homes to workers from outside the UK.”

DJ Alexander is Scotland’s highest profile and largest lettings agency and says rents in Scotland rose by 2.9 per cent in the 12 months to April 2022 compared with 2.5 per cent in England.

Although the Scottish annual rate has been higher than England and Wales each month since July 2021, over the long term since 2015, rents in England, Northern Ireland and Wales have risen at a higher rate than Scotland.

In the seven years since February 2015 up until April 2022 rents in Northern Ireland have increased by 19.9 per cent; in England 13.5 per cent; in Wales 8.0 per cent; and in Scotland 6.8 per cent.

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  • icon

    The onset of increased costs in the "all bills included" market particularly the HMO market can only put huge pressure onto landlords who are already facing high costs associated with the new EPC regulations, higher interest rates,more legislation rules, licencing etc....
    However, the market will survive,the players may change, but the Government / political parties are unlikely to be sympathetic as upsetting landlords is less dangerous to them than upsetting voters.
    It amazes me to read the partisan comments about landlords and the PRS .As a responsible landlord I have tried to help some people by giving them a chance when their luck appeared to be down and whilst some have repaid my faith, many have cost me thousands in lost rent, damage etc.One such ex tenant who owes me over £1,000 was seen in the town yesterday transacting a drug deal !!
    (I am aware that getting the right clients depends on the vetting process etc and i have amended mine)

  • George Dawes

    I’m getting rid of gas asap , such a lot of red tape and its intrinsically potentially lethal . Maintenance and new boilers every few years is a nightmare too that’s without the lazy incompetent gas engineers I seem to end up with…

    Matthew Payne

    One of the criteria I advise LLs on choosing BTLs, no gas. Puts costs up all over for LLs & TTs, and a source of friction when repairs need to be done. You buy a modern (ish) PB flat with eco 7 storage heaters, no EPC worries, no gas, cheap to run and maintain.

  • icon

    George, it use not be that way before digital technology, boilers were very reliable, same goes for letting it was much better before digital academics and their nonsense interference none of which they would be doing if it involved actual work.
    When I built my first house 49 years ago by my own hand, I put in the CH & boiler system to a Potterton 60/90 btu floor boiler it was their for 25 years until I decided refit kitchen, virtually nothing to go wrong just the odd thermocouple cost a few pounds every 6/8 years. Just vacuum it out once a year and use a bottle brush to clear out between the fins of cast iron heat exchanger, a far better service than they get now and no certification required. Its all so different now I am not even allowed to take off the cover leave that to the experts probably bend it taking it off or putting it back, although some are very good good.


    I also used to service my own LPG boiler years ago when we were allowed to, I used to replace the thermal coupling every year, never had a problem with it, but LPG got too expensive so I went biomass 7 yrs ago, just had my last RHI payment, we have had a couple of breakdowns with the biomass, not as good as those old boilers


    My wife is also a reliable old boiler but I wouldn't dare tell her that!


    Nothing like a good old boiler Robert , I've got one costs me a fortune !

    George Dawes

    You’re right , we used to have an enormous boiler , built like a tank , no electric gimmicks and it ran like a dream

    Then the gas engineers decided to ‘upgrade’ our systems with all this techno garbage , fifteen buttons and dials to do one thing badly , you need a phd to turn the damn thing on


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