NRLA: 90% of landlords who received support requests have responded positively

Jessica Bird

May 21, 2020

Ben Beadle NRLA

Of those landlords that have received requests for support from a tenant, 90% have responded positively, according to a survey by the National Residential Landlord Association (NRLA). 

The survey of more than 4,500 landlords found that 44% had received a request for help.

Positive responses from landlords included offering a rent reduction or deferral, a rent-free period, early release from a tenancy or a refund on service charges included in rents for homes of multiple occupation (HMOs).

More than half (54%) of respondents had been affected in some way by the impact of the virus on their tenants, experiencing some combination of rent payment problems or unanticipated periods when properties are empty.

60% of those landlords that have declared rent arrears had experienced at least the equivalent of one month’s loss of income across their portfolio.

The figures are supported by a large number of case studies the NRLA has received from landlords seeking to support their tenants, which has included free or substantially discounted accommodation for NHS workers, and landlords proactively assuring tenants that their tenancy is not at risk.

Ben Beadle, chief executive of the NRLA, said: “This research proves that the vast majority of landlords are doing everything possible to support tenants through difficult times.

“To suggest otherwise is needless scaremongering and serves only to heighten anxieties for tenants when we need a spirit of co-operation.

“We are continuing to work with landlords and the government to sustain tenancies through the immediate crisis and beyond.

“As Ministers consider their next steps regarding the ban on evictions, they should not make it more difficult to take action against tenants who may be committing anti-social behaviour or domestic abuse, or where they are wilfully withholding rent which they can afford to pay.

“We need landlords who are going through a difficult time to have the confidence to stay in the market.

“Otherwise, we are only going to end up with a worsening housing crisis as more tenants chase fewer properties.”

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