BTL landlord ‘bear the brunt of rising costs to keep tenants in their homes’

Shelter claims almost one in seven private tenants have had rent increased in the past month, with many of those living in the PRS at “breaking point”.

The homelesness charity today warned that a third of cash-strapped renters are also spending at least half of their monthly income on rent.

Shelter is calling on prime minister Liz Truss to urgently unfreeze housing benefit, as official figures show that 56,340 households with children needed help to stop them becoming homeless in 2021-22 – a 23% increase on the previous year.

Polling by YouGov for Shelter of more than 2,000 people found that 13% said their rent had increased in the last month.

According to the poll a staggering 32% of renters said they spend at least half of their monthly income on rental payments.

A similar number – 30% – of private renters are behind or constantly struggling to pay their rent, the charity added.

Shelter’s chief executive, Polly Neate, said: “With more than a million private tenants hit with a rent hike in just the last month, time is running out.

“The already high cost of renting means tenants were on the ropes trying to keep up with rising food and energy prices. Now runaway rents will deal many renters a knock-out blow.

“Our emergency helpline advisers are doing everything they can to help people cling onto their homes.

“We’re at breaking point, too many families won’t be able to keep a roof over their head this winter because they won’t be able to afford to heat their home or pay their rent.”

In response to Shelter’s report, Chris Norris, policy director for the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA), has praised buy-to-let landlords for the role they play in providing much-needed housing across the country.

He said: “At a time when inflation is so high and landlord costs are rapidly increasing, the latest official data shows that average private rents across the UK have gone up by 3.4 per cent over the last twelve months. This shows that most landlords are prepared to bear the brunt of rising costs to keep tenants in their homes when they can.

“There will be cases where landlords are simply unable to shoulder all the increased costs and need to increase rents accordingly. Where this causes difficulties, particularly for tenants on low incomes, the Government should end the freeze on housing benefits. Even before the sharp rise in inflation, the level of benefits was failing to reflect the cost of rents as they are today.

“Further increases in rents will also be driven by a chronic shortage of homes for private rent. This is a direct consequence of government action to discourage investment in the sector. Ministers need urgently to develop pro-growth policies to ensure supply meets demand in the rental market.”

 

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One Comment

  1. AcornsRNuts

    Polly Bleat off again.  Does the woman not realise that far from helping the homeless, she and her ilk are creating more homelessness.  Unless Liz Truss is sensible and scraps the abolition of S21, landlords will continue to sell up.  Well done, Polly!

    IInteresting that Polly, with her doom and gloom, gets the headline and the attention.  The NRLA with more accurate information is relegated to the end of the article, almost as a footnote, despite the headline.

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