Most landlords are a long way from the ‘evil profiteers’ image some organisations like to portray them as being, new research has revealed.
74% of private landlords have told a survey by BVA BDRC/Nationwide that they feel a sense of duty to support tenants during times of financial difficulty, and that 40% had already done so over the past 12 months.
This has included temporary or permanent rent reductions, a rental payment holiday or lending tenants money to pay for their day-to-day living expenses.
Nevertheless, rising maintenance, repairs and mortgage costs mean half of those quizzed also say they are considering a rent rise to cover these additional expenses given the average annual ‘profit margin’ in a BTL is 7.6%. Inflation is currently running at 9% and the cost of building work has leapt by 24.5% from March 2021 to March 2022, according to official data from BEIS.
Paul Wootton, Director of The Landlord Works, said: “Landlords are facing a real dilemma at the moment in dealing with the continued rising cost of living.
“On the one hand, there is a need to ensure they can cover the increasing costs associated with their properties and ensure they are following the market.
“However, as our research demonstrates, they are also acutely aware of the financial challenges facing their tenants.”
The survey also found that three-quarters of those who own more than ten properties aim to increase their rents over the next 12 months, compared to just 44 per cent of landlords owning between one and three properties.
Landlords with smaller portfolios are able to reduce rents by a slightly higher amount, it says.
Read more: How to maintain good relations with your tenants.