James Davis of Upad comments on the Chancellor’s Budget speech in which he announced that a consultation would be launched to look at barriers to longer tenancies in the private rented sector. James Davis is founder of online letting agent Upad.co.uk and is himself a portfolio landlord. Mr Davis says:
“Whilst longer tenancies aren’t exactly new, the fact that a consultation will now take place should be welcomed.
“From the landlord’s perspective, it’s better to have the security of knowing your property is let, albeit without a regular % increase in the rent, than it is to enjoy 5% income rises but with the risk of costly void periods. It’s all about looking at the bigger picture and in this instance, that’s your profit and loss account.
“I’ve personally agreed many three or even five-year tenancies and have found that they offer me far greater security and peace of mind, compared to regular six monthly turnovers of tenants.
“Then, of course, there’s the simple ‘hassle factor’ of regular changes in occupants: cleaning, repairs, making time for viewings and the administration that goes with all of that. Personally, I’d rather get on with living life!
“That said, a certain level of flexibility will need to be employed so that any investor with a loan or loans against his portfolio isn’t penalised by tenancy agreements of longer than three years as this could limit his financing options.
“From the tenant’s perspective, longer agreements can also signal greater security knowing that there’s a roof over their head for a certain amount of time.
“Again though, there is a need for flexibility as many tenants that we engage with, enjoy the flexibility that six month agreements afford them.
“I shall eagerly await the findings of this consultation and would be happy to contribute to it.”
Upad began in 2007 and has grown into the UK’s largest online lettings agency by offering a simpler, more cost-effective way to find tenants and let a property. This has proved equally popular among landlords who previously used a high street letting agent to find tenants as well as those who used classified channels says James Davis. Last year, Upad helped rent over 10,000 properties.