Government urged to tell tenants they must continue paying rent during pandemic

Landlords are calling on the Government to make a clear statement that tenants must continue to pay their rent during the coronavirus pandemic where possible.

The National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) has reported that increasing numbers of members are telling the trade body that their tenants are under the impression that they no longer have to pay any rent.

Groups such as the National Union of Students have been calling for rent breaks while tenants’ union Acorn last week launched a petition calling for the Government to allow payments to be suspended. 

Ben Beadle, chief executive of the NRLA, said some tenants believe that because lenders have provided the option of a three-month mortgage payment holiday to landlords, they should not pay rent for this period.

He said: “The mortgage repayment holiday is only available for landlords who are struggling to make their payments because their tenants are unable to pay part or all of their rent as a direct result of the coronavirus and through no fault of their own.

“It is not an automatic payment holiday and landlords who successfully apply still have to make these payments later on. It is not a grant.

“What it does allow is that where a tenant is having genuine difficulty in meeting their rent payment because of a loss of income, landlords have much greater flexibility to agree a mutually acceptable plan with the tenant to defer the rent due.

“This is not a green light to tenants everywhere to stop paying their rent.”

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  1. James Wilson

    Why should tenants have to pay when owner / occupiers get a three month holiday?   They should get the same treatment.

    1. JMK

      Did you actually manage to read the article James?  The ‘holiday’ is only available if tenants are struggling to pay their rent due to the virus.

      Also the ‘holiday’ is not automatic so the landlord has to provide evidence to the lender that the tenants are struggling.  Even then the ‘holiday’ may not be granted.  If it is then the missed payments will be added to the amount outstanding and extra interest will be paid on that.  Plus we are now taxed on the interest too.

      Lastly the mortgage is only one of the costs.  On one of my HMOs it represents around 30% of the overall costs.

      That’s why you need to keep paying James.  I hope you understand now.


    2. Chris Watkin

      James – the landlord isn’t being let off their mortgage payments, instead the landlord can only DEFER his/her mortgage payments if the landlord can prove, using info from the tenant, they (the tenant) can’t pay the rent.

      The landlord will still be liable to pay the missed mortgage payments at a later date – as will the tenant need to pay the missed mortgage payments at a later date

      it’s true Landlords that take up the mortgage holiday scheme will get up to three months where they do not need to make a payment to their lender.

      note – the tenant has to prove to the landlord they can’t pay the rent – in practice many (not all) but many lenders are requiring such proof as Universal Credit applications by the tenant as proof.


    3. MichaelDay


      No-one is being let off anything.

      Whether a mortgagor or a tenant, there is a contractual requirement to pay the mortgage to the mortgage or the rent to the landlord.

      These are difficult times and, in cases of genuine financial hardship, mortgage lenders may allow a mortgage holiday and landlords may allow a deferment or even reduction in rent but there is no automatic right.

      My clients are dealing daily with lots of tenants who are “trying it on” to reduce or stop paying rent but also Situations of genuine hardship. Key is level headed communication Between the parties.


    4. Will2

      Poor deluded James doesn’t understand that the misleading statement of a “holiday” is a deferral of mortgage payments which extends the mortgage term by another 3 months where there is hardship NOT mortgage free.  Tenants are contractually obliged to pay their rent if they don’t they will accrue arrears and face eviction all be it the eviction will take longer due to the 3 month notice period for s21 and s8 actions.

    5. PMT

      …sorry, James, but people like you make me despair for democracy generally.  Smh.

    6. jackoTLG

      As well as having no basic understanding of the current situation or being able to read an article before commenting…James probably also voted for corbyn 

      1. Not Surprised

        What a ridiculous thing to say.

    7. Jonathan.Welford


      The landlords still have to pay, it’s added onto the sum owed. It’s purely a payment break.

      I do hope you have read around what’s happening, so, if you are working in the industry you are giving the best advise.




    8. Happy Daze!

      This is only in hardship … not a given! What about landlords really on that income to live on?! The students still receive their loans but are likely at home with no living expenses, those furloughed receive 80% of their income. They have no cause for disposable income…. they should pay their rent!


    I logged in to respond to James Wilsons comment, but then read the response from JMK.

    I couldn’t have responded better myself!

  3. Jason Coombes

    James, why, why, why, would you make such a ridiculous remark, without a) reading the article, b) understanding the article you were supposed to read. Many tenants are using this as an excuse not to pay, not that they can’t afford to pay. The government has consistently suggested, pay what you can to keep rent flowing and keep arrears build up to a minimum. Landlords that are unfortunately unable to make mortgage payments and can get a mortgage holiday are expected to do the same for their tenants. Clearly James hates landlords, he gets his news and opinions from social media and has no consideration for the people that only have the rent as their one source of income, (yes James, landlords are human beings too..) But, hey James, it’s OK, all landlords are filthy rich, Dickensian villains with capes, canes and stovepipe hats, aren’t they!

    1. eyelet41

      Well said! Spot on! 

  4. eyelet41

    I feel sorry for you James……the reason why we are where we are is because of ignorance that wins 7 to 1. People like you who doesn’t understand and won’t read or listen to learn to understand.
    Hope you have a clear picture now, after the so many constructive comments.

  5. Jonti500

    Another note to make is that some landlords have commercial loans and not Buy To Let mortgages . Many of these lenders are not giving deferred deals. Also I come across many students and some have just assumed they don’t need to pay or as per James, have a deluded view. Yet I don’t know of any who have contacted Student Finance requesting they do not want their student loan payment!

  6. DASH94

    I’ve been quoted this ‘mortgage holiday’  so many times this past fortnight by tenants asking to be let off their rent – irrespective of their ability  to pay.  My stock response is ‘please explain what you think is meant by the phrase mortgage holiday?’

    100% of the answers are that it means, in essence, ‘free money’.


    Didn’t think I’d encounter the same thinking in here.  Its mind-blowing


  7. spin2009

    For what’s its worth government website states that tenants should continue paying rent making it clear that not all tenants will be financially effected in the same way as those who suddenly will need to rely on benefits.

    It is much overlooked that many small landlords, even those without mortgages, will still have service charge and maintenance obligations that they have to fulfil. Plumbers/electricians will only be coming out for those who are regulars or pay cash!

    It’s these older landlords who have relied on this income as their pension and to feed themselves whilst they spend an uncertain time in total isolation.

    Where I come from I still pay for my “holidays”



  8. J1

    Good luck with the re-sits of your GCSE’s James ………

  9. The Future Is Tech

    Looking forward to seeing the interview PIE has with James tomorrow and his comments….








  10. jeremy1960

    James has gone very quiet, do you think mummy has put him to bed with no lunch?

  11. HIT MAN

    Dear landlord, Im only getting 80% of my wages so can only afford to pay 80% of my rent. Dear Tenant, if your budget is that tight how will you ever be able to pay back the 20% shortfall, if you can only pay 100% rent when on back on normal wages?? Dear Landlord, well the news says that landlords get a mortgage holiday and we don’t have to pay rent. Dear Tenant, well you better take that up with the BBC they obviously know more than we do, please accept this Section 21 as notice to vacate the property, I have extended the expiry date in line with BBC recommendations. In the meantime you may want to look at cutting down on some of your outgoings i.e. TV subscriptions, Cigarettes and Booze and gym subscription,  to help you I have attached a household budgeting planner.  


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