Landlord Law Newsround #345

Our last Newsround for June, let’s see what housing news has caught our eye here at Landlord Law this week.

Renters are now calling for EPC changes

EPC reform is in the news alot lately and now renters are demanding that action is taken to help make green initiatives more available.

Rightmove has conducted a survey and has determined that 87% of renters are now calling for immediate action for green improvements to help bring their heating bills down and make their rental homes more energy efficient.

Over half of the UK’s housing are an EPC rating of D or lower and these lower ratings can make a difference of thousands of pounds in energy bills. A home with EPC F brings in an energy bill of £4,431pa where the same house with a rating of ‘C’ has an annual energy bill of £1,669.

Nathan Emerson of Rightmove says

We would be keen to see any incoming government construct a wide-ranging package of support to assist with upgrades at the first opportunity.

It’s vital there is a diverse approach of funding, grants, and targeted schemes based on age, condition, and size and that there is robust infrastructure in place to deliver on such ambitions.

Are guarantors the way to go if S21 is abolished?

Tom Entwistle, a recognised writer on residential property explains that now might be the time to take on a guarantor or rent guarantee insurance if section 21 is abolished. A guarantor can protect a landlord against rent arrears and tenancy problems and it gives the landlord some protection.

Having a guarantor mitigates some of the risk of taking on a tenant that looks good on paper but could be on a low income or have a poor credit score. The guarantor will pay the landlord the rent if the tenant cannot, it is universal for students lets.

However, a landlord must make sure that the contract is drawn up correctly and legally if it is to stand up in court. There is no standard form.

At Landlord Law we have a vast array of information concerning guarantors including when a guarantee is invalid, this is all free for members to access. Members can access our full and very detailed section on Guarantees here.

Tenants ongoing struggle to afford rents

TDS Charitable Foundation has produced a new survey which finds that over 2,000 private tenants in March are finding it difficult to afford their rent.

35% of renters fell into this category and this increased to 56% where tenants are not in employment due to long term sickness or disability. 45% of students struggled with their rent payments 43% of those were receiving benefits in some form. Not surprisingly 55% of tenants have cut back on necessary outgoing expenses such food and heating, and shockingly this rose to 72% for single parent renters.

The report also detailed that average rents have increased by 7%, but showed a big disparity between locations.

TDS Charitable Foundation is calling on all parties to deal with the ever growing gap between supply and demand, and that the government unfreezes housing benefit rates.

Dr Jennifer Harris of the Foundation says

Being able to afford a home should be the foundation for anyone to flourish. However, our data paints a worrying picture of the pressures many renters are now under and has implications for landlords with tenants in arrears.

Landlords who want to help tenants who are in financial difficulties should take a look at our Helping Tenants in Arrears Kit.

Another council cracks down on rogue landlord

Haringey Council has issued a total of £41,000 civil penalty fines as it continues to crack down hard on rogue landlords. They served improvement notices on a large HMO dwelling for severe hazards throughout the property, the property was also found to have damp and mould in rooms posing as a severe health risk. The landlord failed to ac,t having been given many warnings, and was fined £13,500 civil penalty notice.

The council also fined a landlord and three letting agent directors £27,500 for failing to hold the correct HMO license for a house in Tottenham. The council also managed to prevent the letting company from declaring insolvency and thus avoiding paying the fine, by working directly with Companies House.

Eubert Malcolm from Haringey Council said

It is imperative that landlords and letting agents adhere to the legal requirements to not only avoid prosecution, but also protect and maintain high housing standards in Haringey.

Making sure a landlord has the correct licenses is imperative as more and more councils are bringing in differing licensing schemes, ignorance is no excuse and fines canbe excessive. Here at Landlord Law we have a comprehensive Local Authority Directory.


Landlord to repay tenants £21,500 after Tribunal probe
Scotland’s housebuilding plummets following rent controls
Landlord loses appeal against £35,000 licensing fine
Is the landlord right to claim for rent arrears & damage caused during the tenancy?
General Election: What are Labour’s manifesto commitments for the Private Rented Sector?

Newsround will be back next week.

The post Landlord Law Newsround #345 appeared first on The Landlord Law Blog.





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