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Most tenants and landlords say Tory PRS policies 'wrong'

Tory PRS policy spareroom

A staggering 94% of renters don’t have confidence in the government’s approach to housing, according to a poll by SpareRoom.

The flat-share site quizzed more than 3,700 renters, 82% of whom said they would be more likely to vote for a party that they thought had a good approach to housing.

There is one area where they do agree. Following Housing Secretary Michael Gove’s recent announcement of plans to clamp down on short-term lets to combat the ongoing housing crisis, SpareRoom found that 86% of renters think the UK should prioritise homes over holiday lets.

Tax relief

The poll, which included landlords, revealed that a huge majority of them believe they should have the same tax reliefs as short-term let landlords (97%).

Spare Room's poll quizzed 1,400 landlords and agents who revealed that 94% believe levelling these tax breaks would encourage more landlords to rent out their properties on a long-term basis.

The property portal reports its study of live adverts found that the average UK room rent was £806 in January, highlighting the need for the government to introduce urgent reform in the housing sector. Indeed, 79% of landlords would be more likely to vote for a political party that was committed to tackling the housing crisis.

No sense

SpareRoom director Matt Hutchinson (pictured) says while clamping down on short-term lets is great, the government must address why landlords are so keen to offer short-term lets in the first place.

He adds: “The current tax system offers landlords of short-term and holiday lets several incentives that residential landlords don’t get, which makes no sense whatsoever when we have a housing crisis, not a hotel room crisis.

"At the very least, government needs to level the playing field and stop making short-term lets more attractive than homes.”

The results of the poll may unnerve some in Whitehall. Conservative ministers past and present have been pinning their electoral hopes on attacking landlords in the belief that this will resonate well with tenants, who aren't usually natural supporters of the party.


Housing policy