The scandal of ‘buy-to-leave’ investors denying Londoners the homes they need is at the heart of the RLA’s mayoral election campaign, with representatives lobbing candidates in the capital ahead of next week’s election.
Almost 57,000 homes in the capital thought to be lying empty and the RLA is in the city, demanding the next Mayor of London to use powers available to ensure they are brought back to the market – for sale either to landlords who want to offer properties to live in or would-be home owners.
According to an analysis by the accountants PwC, around 60 per cent of Londoners will be in private rented housing by 2025. The RLA is calling for the new Mayor to work positively with landlords to ensure that these homes are safe, legal and secure by encouraging good landlords to develop new homes.
Commenting, David Smith, Policy Director for the Residential Landlords Association, said: “With access to decent and affordable housing the number one issue in London, it is a scandal that so many homes lie empty as investors wait to sell them off for a profit.
“The next Mayor needs to use all the powers they have to stamp out this practice, and encourage good, decent landlords to provide the homes to rent Londoners need.”
The association has launched its own manifesto- Landlords4London, outlining the key issues facing PRS landlords and how the successful candidate can support the sector, which is vital when it comes to housing London’s burgeoning population.
In addition to addressing buy-to-leave, London Campaigns Coordinator Ryan Buckley is now in the city lobbying the candidates on other issues the RLA believes should be priorities for the successful candidate including discouraging rent controls, encouraging better enforcement, boosting supply and introducing flexible tenancies.
He has held meetings with Sadiq Khan and Caroline Pidgeon’s campaign teams as well as representatives from across the London boroughs and will continue to campaign in the city post-election.
The RLA is robustly opposing any plans to introduce rent controls on the basis they will reduce the supply and quality of private rented accommodation, at the same time encouraging the successful candidate to look at better enforcing existing legislation to tackle criminal landlords.
Alan Ward, RLA Chairman said: “The Private Rented Sector is a vital provider of housing in the capital, with a huge shortfall in the social housing offer and spiralling house prices.
“After the hammering buy-to let landlords have taken at the hands of the chancellor we want the successful mayoral candidate to recognise the essential role these landlords play in tackling London’s housing crisis.”
To visit the RLA election website click here.
To read the Manifesto click here.