National letting agent trade body Propertymark has told the Chancellor that unless the private rented sector is overhauled a significant number of landlords will quit the sector.
The organisation says within its submission to the Sunak’s Autumn Budget and Spending Review that the rental market is already facing a ‘cliff edge’ as the private rented sector struggles to keep up with demand, but that rent arrear and a crumbling court system are making the situation worse.
Such an exodus of landlords would be catastrophic for the housing system, including the many people who rely on the private rented sector to meet their housing needs.
Research completed recently by broker The Mortgage Works found that 20% of landlords are likely to sell property in the next 12 months.
Propertymark says this is down to a combination of moving goal posts, tax implications, tenant debt and a backlog in the courts as reasons many smaller portfolio landlords are being left with few options.
The trade body says the effect on landlords has been compounded over the pandemic and official government figures show the proportion of private renters in arrears has tripled during the pandemic, from 3% between April 2019 and March 2020 to 9% during November and December 2020.
It warns that if the upward trend in this data continues the number of renters in arears could reach almost 800,000 by the end of 2021.
Mark Hayward, Chief Policy Advisor for Propertymark says: “We are urging the UK Government to look at the bigger picture here.
“It’s not about propping up landlords but more about doing the right thing for the country as we work to build back better from the devastating effects of the pandemic.”