A prominent landlord in the North East has told the BBC's Newsnight programme that unless variable mortgage rates reduce he will have to start '�handing the keys back' to the ten or so properties within his portfolio.
Talking to reporter Sam Gruet (pictured), landlord Colin Campbell (main image), who is also chairman of the South Tyneside Landlords Association, said his income from rent was now outstripped by his rising mortgage payments.
'My market is the people who are on Housing Benefit or Universal Credit and I'm usually paid their rent direct by the Government,'� he said.
'But now the interest rates is so high that the rent coming in from the Government, which here is �475 a month per tenant, is less than I'm having to pay the building society for the next two years.
Campbell went on to say that given his experience, the private rented sector is set to shrink significantly and that, consequently, unless local and national governments start building council houses in greater numbers, 'the place is going to be full of desperate people in guest houses and hotels because there will be nowhere for them to live," he said.
The 75-year-old landlord, who in the past has also criticised selective licensing in Tyneside, appeared alongside a local letting agent who recounted examples of tenants competing more and more for a shrinking number of properties, and a student tenant priced out of Newcastle city centre.