The National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) has responded to recent criticism aimed at private landlords, with praise for their part in providing this much needed and relied upon housing.
It comes after private landlords have taken another bashing from the homelessness charity Shelter who claim that tenants are facing such rent increases that it means it is breaking point for those living in the private rented sector.
The NRLA countered Shelter’s claim that almost one in seven private tenants have had rent increased in the past month and emotive comments around “runaway rents dealing many renters a knock-out blow” with data that shows that average private rents have gone up by just over 3% in the past year.
“At a time when inflation is so high and landlord costs are rapidly increasing,” said Chris Norris, policy director for the NRLA “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.”
A report into renting which was published just a few months ago from the independent Social Market Foundation, found that 81% of private tenants were happy with their current rental home and 85% were satisfied with their landlords. The report also stated that private renters particularly value not having to pay for repairs, maintenance or insurance and other costs, with over two-thirds saying this a major benefit of renting.
It is obvious that everybody is feeling the pinch of increased costs, but the blame cannot be placed with landlords for what is a wider issue and greater Government intervention is called for.
“There will be cases where landlords are simply unable to shoulder all the increased costs and need to increase rents accordingly,” commented Chris Norris. “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.”
The PRS is a vital part of the country’s housing, now with nearly 13 million renters in the UK, the private rented sector represents 20% of all households however the imbalance of supply of and demand for properties is a major concern and again one that the NRLA are calling on the Government to address.
“Further increases in rents will also be driven by a chronic shortage of homes for private rent,” added Chris Norris. “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.”
If you need any advice on this or would like to discuss any other matters on the local property market, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Managing Director / ARLA Propertymark Advisory Board
Tel: 01394 337590