The warning comes from Landlord Assist, a nationwide referencing, rent collection and tenant eviction firm, which says the introduction of a charter announced by the Communities Secretary Eric Pickles could work against landlords in many areas and potentially force rents beyond record levels and result in a reduction of quality accommodation.
The idea behind the new measures is to enable tenants to request longer tenancies in order to provide stability for families and avoid hidden fees when renting a home whilst helping to root out rogue operators in the sector.
But while agreeing that families should be afforded more stability in the rental sector, Graham Kinnear, managing director at Landlord Assist, is concerned that landlords face significant barriers under the proposals and will be left facing the possibility of greater rent arrears, increased costs anddifficulty in obtaining possession if a tenant defaults on payments.
He believes that in many cases landlords will also have little alternative but to pass on the increased costs to tenants through rising rents and allowing tenants to request longer tenancies will result in landlords potentially being in breach of their buy to let mortgages as most lenders currently won’t allow borrowers to rent out their properties beyond 12 months.
‘Most buy to let mortgages will only permit a six or 12 month tenancy. This is because it is much easier for banks to repossess a property if the landlord defaults on a buy to let loan,’ said Kinnear.
‘Extended tenancy agreements may impact a bank’s security, especially in the event of a property repossession and the bank wishing to sell it with vacant possession. If lenders face greater risks then this may force them to increase the rate they charge landlords and therefore, perhaps, an increase in the rent that is charged to the tenant. This would clearly fly in the face of what the government is trying to achieve,’ he explained.
He also believes that it is essential that new possession rules are introduced to protect the interests of landlords before the new scheme goes ahead. ‘In most cases it can take landlords months to enforce a repossession order and regain the keys to the property. If a landlord has granted a tenancy of several years, then in principle they could have to wait this period of time before they could get the tenant to leave,’ he pointed out.
‘Should the new scheme get the go ahead, we also expect letting agents to increase their administration fees for longer tenancies when compared to, say, six month lets. Letting agents rely on new tenancies as a continual revenue stream so inevitably they are likely to increase their charges for longer tenancy agreements. Again, landlords will have little alternative...
Most Popular Slideshows
- Top Ten Richest Americans [PHOTOS]
- A Tribute To Great Actor Paul Walker: Best Quotes From 'Fast And Furious' Films [PHOTOS/ VIDEOS]
- Slideshow: Kate Middleton Looks Ravishing in Black Net Dress, Covers Up Grey [SEE PHOTOS]
- Is Orlando Bloom’s Wife, Miranda Kerr Singing Love Songs for James Packer? [WATCH VIDEOS]