77% of landlords say their tenants can afford to continue paying rent during lockdown

A survey, which polled 200 landlords from across the UK, has revealed that 77% of property owners believe their tenants can afford to continue paying full rent rates during the Covid-19 outbreak.

The poll was carried out by online self-assessment software provider, GoSimpleTax.

Whilst 77% of respondents said that their tenants don’t require rent relief, 16% of landlords said that they had voluntarily offered tenants discount, ranging from 20%-100%, depending on their tenants’ individual circumstances.

6% of landlords said that they hadn’t offered their tenants discount, because they couldn’t afford to defer the rent.

GoSimpleTax is advising landlords who agree to defer tenants’ rent during Covid-19 to ensure they keep full records of rents received and deferred.

Mike Parkes, technical director at GoSimpleTax, said:

“It’s worth saying that landlords won’t pay tax on rent they don’t receive if they elect to report their rental income and expenses on the ‘cash basis’.

“Landlords will be able to use this basis of calculating income and expenses for their self-assessment tax return if their rental income from residential tenants is less than £150,000 in the year.

“If the deferred rent is received in a subsequent year, it will be taxable on receipt but if it transpires that the rent is never paid, again, this does not present a tax problem.

“It is positive to see that landlords are in open discussion with tenants, and that a large majority of renters have the ability to continue paying full rates.

“In such an unparalleled situation, it makes sense for all parties to keep communicating regularly and to be open with each other about their respective situations.”

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