Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Private Landlords say 'no' to Tenants on Housing Benefit

Searching for suitable and affordable private housing to rent is hard enough with five tenants vying for each available property, but if you’re in receipt of housing benefit, what are your chances?

Recent studies conducted by different organisations are indicating a serious flaw in government reform and housing benefit policy pointing towards a detrimental impact on the rented housing sector. Research from BDRC Continental, RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors), Communities & Local Government and the NLA (National Landlord Association) are all painting a pretty grey picture. And as you would expect, yup, it’s the low-income households that will feel the impact more.

Click here to read the full story Private Landlords say 'no' to Tenants on Housing Benefit

NetRent Comment

Under the current system landlords are effectively being asked to subsidise tenants who will not pay. Rent arrears have doubled in the past couple of years and quite rightly landlords are not prepared to take the risk that tenants on benefits will pay the rent owed.

Before the current legislation came in landlords were paid direct and although in many cases the rent the received may have been slightly less than the market rate landlords could be confident that they would be paid. This led to many more homes being let to tenants on benefits. If the Government returned to paying benefits direct to landlords it is likely that most landlords would seriously consider DSS tenants, simply because landlords would know that the rent would be paid.

Why is such a simple solution so difficult to implement?