Your Friday Newsround looking at new calls from Generation Rent and pressure to change the law on pets.
Generation Rent calling for landlords to pay tenants’ moving costs
Generation Rent are demanding that when landlords sell their property and need to move on their tenants that it should be the landlords who pay for their moving costs.
They claim that the average for an unplanned move by a tenant is around £1,709 which includes time off work, spending money on a deposit and van hire. For this cost of moving, the group has called for landlords to ‘pay the equivalent of two months rent towards a tenant’s moving costs and to minimise the stress of moving’.
This demand is on top of Generation Rent calling for open-ended tenancies which will give tenants flexibility and stability which will enable tenants to put down roots.
Call for greater incentives for landlords to shun AirBnB and short lets
The Leader of the North Devon Council has called for the government to create greater incentives for landlords to stick with traditional long term tenants.
North Devon has one of the highest rates of short let properties within the UK. Alongside UK other tourist hotspots has seen a sharp fall in rental properties as more landlords have seen the economic benefits of renting out as a holiday let property.
The measures proposed include removing mortgage interest and Capital gains relief from holiday rentals properties and allowing councils to set higher council tax on second homes.
The leader of the North Devon Council, David Worden said:
The answer for the current problems goes beyond the powers of local authorities and goes beyond simply building more homes. It needs a joined up approach from local and national government to resolve these issues and will need honesty and commitment from all those involved
MP’s apply pressure to Housing Secretary to help landlord accept pets
A cross-party group of 35 MP’s, industry figures and peers have written an open letter to the Housing Secretary Robert Jennick to amend the Tenant Fees Act making it easier for landlords to rent to tenants with pets.
The group are calling for the legislation to be amended to allow landlords or managing agents to either
- charge tenants a pet deposit or
- require tenants to take out specialist insurance regarding their pets.
This is currently prohibited by the legislation
The group Advocats recently published a report regarding pets in rental properties and found that one in five landlords who previously allowed pets in their property, no longer do so – since the passing of the Tenant Fees Act.
The most popular notion seems to be allowing Tenants to take out pet damage insurance. As it seems this would persuade more landlords to allow pets.
Landlords would still be able to refuse pets if they wish, but those who agree would have better protection against pet damage.
Energy Efficiency a top priority for prospective tenants reveals study
A Direct line survey has revealed that 80% of prospective tenants would consider energy efficiency as one of the critical items determining they would want to rent a particular property. In addition to this, 75% of renters responding to the survey answered that a property’s energy efficiency is important to them.
It seems that young people are less inclined to rent a place that has poor energy efficiency. With 41% responding that they would either move or not rent in the first place to a poor EPC rating property.
This study shows that there is an incentive to make properties more energy efficient. Local Authorities often have grants on home improvements to make properties more energy efficient. Landlords who do not have the capital for this expenditure should look into this as it may be more affordable.
UK councils ready to house Afghan refugees but stock remains an ongoing issue
The UK government is being urged to provide greater funds to help accommodate fleeing Afghani refugees. Many councils have complained that they will be unable to accommodate refugees if they are not given funds to create more houses. The £5 million fund that the government has offered councils for accommodating these refugees has also come under criticism as being not enough.
In addition, many councils have asked that landlords with vacant properties make themselves known to councils to accommodate the refugees.
Steven Cowan, the leader of Hammersmith & Fulham council argued that:
Councils like ours stand by ready to assist Afghan refugees and are already doing so but we need the government to come forward with a comprehensive scheme that joins up the approach across government departments providing sufficient financial and organisational support.
Dorset Council for example is refusing to use social housing intended for local families and is asking for private landlords and second homeowners to volunteer properties.
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- Does PropertyMark really influence government policy
- Letting agents warn Scottish Minister over rent control plans
- Tenancy disputes reduced during covid says TDS
- Revealed: The slowest councils to complete property searches
- Tenants now able to lodge rental deposits direct with TDS and Mydeposits
Newsround will be back next week.