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Graham Awards


Arrears - top worry for landlords and tenants right now

A survey of 12,000 tenants suggests that over three-quarters are concerned about the impact of the cost of living crisis on their ability to pay rent.

And a survey of 1,000 landlords conducted in parallel shows that renters’ ability to pay rent is the number one concern.

The studies are from HomeLet with Dataloft.


Rent accounts for an average of 30.5 per cent of a renter’s gross monthly income in the UK, ranging from 23 per cent in Northern Ireland to 34 per cent in London.

The survey found that over three quarters of renters feel inflation will have a moderate to a significant impact on their ability to pay the rent. 

One in four renters rank this as their top concern in the next year, closely followed by worries about landlords increasing rent.

Just 11 per cent of renters feel the cost of living crisis will have no impact on them.

Amongst landlords, 36 per cent have no plans to increase the rent on any of their portfolio over the next 18 months.

But 40 per cent are likely to increase the rent on one or more properties over the next year. Over half of these landlords are doing so to cover increased costs.

Landlords were more worried about arrears than about the abolition of Section 21 notices and other taxation or legislative issues.

HomeLet chief executive Andy Halstead says: “Many people in Britain are facing a financial crisis. We have the perfect storm, ramping inflation, interest rate increases and war in Europe that exponentially impacts utility prices. 

“Landlords know the pressure on tenants, but many landlords must increase the rent because the cost they face is growing. 

“Landlords and Tenants are people; both groups are equally affected, as our letting agent businesses. Add to this crisis the government interventions, which make life even more difficult for all concerned in the rental sector.

“The rental market plays a critical role in satisfying the UK’s housing needs; there simply isn’t enough housing stock. Many landlords are choosing to exit the market, which only causes further strain on stock levels and letting agent businesses.

“The government’s commitment to legislation in the market through the Renters’ Reform Bill will provide the most significant change to rental law in a generation, and I can’t see any positives.”

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    I wonder about surveys as this is not my experience. For a proportion of my tenants paying rent is optional and when asked why they have not paid their rent they often tell me the council, who always vehemently denied saying this, have told them they do not have to pay the rent and when they get evicted the council will rehouse them and if the landlord does not follow the legal eviction process they will prosecute the landlord.

    I have no intention of increasing my rents and have never increased rents to existing tenants for the 30 years I’ve been in business. I also operate a no eviction policy and will not evict a tenant who cannot pay only those who wilfully refuse to pay rent and/or antisocial. Unfortunately there is a lot of tenants who fall into this category. I’ve never come across a tenant who has been unable to pay the rent as we have a wonderful system in this country where if the tenant cannot pay they can claim universal credit. The problem is some tenants will claim universal credit for themselves but not for paying for their rent and if the tenant doesn’t claim the landlord cannot claim for them.
    Jim Haliburton
    The HMO Daddy


    Just an idea...

    Perhaps your 'no eviction' policy is causing more instances of unpaid rent than should be normal?.....


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