The NRLA says Government measures to abolish Assured Shorthold Tenancies (ASTs) will '�decimate' the student housing sector if they go ahead unchanged.
Featured within the Renters (Reform) Bill, this will see ASTs replaced with more flexible open-ended '�periodic tenancies' which in effect will enable tenants to quit their properties at any point after giving two months' notice.
While this may give renters in the general rental market more flexibility, it is likely to cause chaos in the student housing sector.
It relies on striking a balance between students signing up to live a property for a year and allowing them to move out once their exams are over, an arrangement that's factored into their rent.
But the Government's plans for open-ended periodic tenancies with two-month notice periods will have several disruptive effects on the student market including, as LandlordZONE reported back in August last year, that landlords will find it harder to offer students '�guaranteed' room in houses for the next academic year until the incumbent tenants give notice.
Periodic tenancies will also bring more uncertainty for landlords because, if a student decides to quit a property half-way through a semester, finding a replacement will be difficult, it is claimed.
For these reasons landlords have been calling on the government to amend the reform bill to give student landlords '�special dispensation' in the same way operators of corporate Purpose Build Student Accommodation have.
'As it stands the Bill will decimate the student housing market,'� says Ben Beadle (pictured), Chief Executive of the National Residential Landlords Association.
'Plans for open ended tenancies mean landlords will have no certainty about properties to rent being available at the start of each academic year.
'The Bill will also mean rental periods will only ever be one month at a time. As a result, students will be unable to pay rents to cover a term at a time, in line with their student loan payments.
'Major changes will be needed if the Government wants a viable student housing market.'�
David Hannah (pictured), Chairman at Cornerstone Group International, says: "Student landlords have been overlooked in the bill...they depend on having a steady income over 12 months, and taking that away leaves major uncertainty for them."