Chief Executive of lettings agents’ trade body ARLA Property David Cox gives LandlordZone his frank views on the proposals and what it means for landlords and agents.
LandlordZone: Do letting agents realise how worried landlords are about the looming abolishment of Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions?
Agents are more terrified of this than they are about the effects of the tenant fees ban, because the fees ban affected THEM, while the Section 21 ban will make life difficult for them and their clients.
Landlords who use letting agents for full-service management are people who want to give their house or flat away to somebody who knows what they are doing and who they trust.
Abolishing Section 21 notice evictions will damage the relationship between landlords and their agents because in the past getting back possession was a relatively easy task. But after ‘no faults’ are got rid of, landlords will face far higher costs and longer waits. Consequently, they will ask their letting agent ‘how did you let this happen?’.
LandlordZone: Will there be any unintended consequences?
It’s strange because on the one hand the government is talking about encouraging landlords to accept pets and be more flexible about tenants in receipt of Universal Credit or on housing benefit.
But on the other hand, ministers are introducing policies that mean there is not a chance in hell they are going to take these sorts of people, who are higher risk [and therefore more likely to need evicting at some point].
The knock-on effects are that firstly, landlords and letting agents will be much choosier about who they allow to rent their properties, and secondly that more landlords will leave the market. There is no doubt about that at all.
If someone is considering renting out their home, why would they do it when removing the tenant will become a lengthy and expensive process?
And that’s on top of being whacked by increased legislation, demonised by politicians and the national media not to mention the extra taxes following the removal of relief on mortgage interest payments.