The Chartered Institute of Housing has warned landlords that a a cliff edge of evictions is very likely later this year as Ministers continue to ignore calls for financial measures to help clear the rent arrears backlog.

Its major annual look at the housing market covering all tenures praises the government for both its early move to halt evictions and housing minister Christopher Pincher’s promise to do ‘whatever it takes’ to stop people losing their homes during Covid.

But the CIH report is less kind about the government’s subsequent actions including its refusal to help landlords or tenants clear the rent arrears backlog, which were highlighted by the ‘Ride Out Recession Alliance.

As LandlordZONE reported at the time, this was a coalition of homelessness charities, tenant lobbying groups and the NRLA – whose recommendations have so far been ignored.

“There is also considerable uncertainty about what will happen when the pandemic ends,” the CIH says.

Summer rebound?

“The government’s apparent expectation of a ‘return to normal’ in financial terms in the Summer is viewed sceptically by many who expect the crisis in household incomes and their ability to meet housing costs to be much longer lived and potentially to get worse before it gets better.”

“Unfortunately, none of these has happened and the pandemic is now continuing well into 2021, reinforcing the impression that a ‘cliff edge’ is very much in prospect later in the year.”

The report also says that although there is varying data and different views as to the extent of the pressures building up in the PRS regarding arrears and how landlords are handling them, the situation is getting ever more difficult as household incomes and savings continue to be eroded by the ongoing pandemic and its consequences.

“The options for delving into savings, cutting other expenses or borrowing privately to pay the rent become exhausted,” it says.

The full CIH report is available for £35 via its bookshop.


  1. It should be obvious to any LL that Govt intends to make eviction as awkward as possible.

    It is in Govts political interests to prevent effective and timely eviction from occurring.

    Govt wishes to continue to facilitate tenants poncing off LL for as long as possible.

    Once LL have succeeded in eviction Govt knows Councils will be faced with millions of homeless tenants.

    It obviously doesn’t wish to pay TA costs while it can effectively force LL to house feckless rent defaulting tenants for free.

    Govt knows that there is very little sympathy amongst the electorate for LL.

    There are only about 2.5 million LL and they are electorally insignificant.

    Even more so with LL who are impossible to organise to become electorally significant.

    They could be electorally significant but LL refuse to co-operate with eachother.
    This is why Govt can divide and rule LL who will never work together to defeat egregious Govt policies.

    Govt is slowly but surely eradicating leveraged LL.

    Once this has been achieved then they will come for mortgage free LL.

    LL are on borrowed time.
    They must expect no assistance from Govt.

    It is pointless all these various groups wittering on about Govt assistance.
    None will be forthcoming.

    LL need to plan for their business to be attacked by Govt.
    If they can’t cope with such Govt attacks then they need to sell up.

    • Hit the nail on the head… Everyone knows this to be true. Very upsetting how it is allowed to continue. The minority of tenants destroying a system for the majority. And yet, very easy to put measures in place to protect all. But as you said it’s never going to happen

  2. Paul, I totally agree. Hence, why I and tens of thousands of landlords are leaving the market.
    It is a disaster for everyone. Those of us who had a system to support ourselves using rents as we got older and not have to rely on the state. Tenants who had a good deal until a few years ago.

    What short-sighted tenants’ advocacy groups, LAs and central government are ignoring is what will happen when 20% of the rental stock goes back on the market. A constrained supply for a rapidly increasing base of people who can’t afford mortgages or will have shattered credit ratings, forcing them to rent for many years to come. Rents will rise but the risks and compliance burdens remain.

    The only landlords who can be profitable are the illegal ones who never registered for licences, never get Gas Safes, have no interest in Fire Orders or HHSRS. And councils won’t have the personnel, money or interest to track them down because they will all be resident in places like Cyprus, will be impossible to track down and equally impossible to get payment of fines. Instead, councils will hound out of existence us mugs who try to work with them and then get clobbered with massive Civil Penalties because the councils know we have the money to pay them.

    I hope in 5 year’s time the dam will burst, authorities will have to return things to where they were 10 years ago to encourage landlords back. Then, only then, might I consider being a landlord again. There is much better, safer money in development and other investments.

  3. Excellent comments succinctly put & I wholeheartedly agree. The government must be a bunch of morons allowing this to happen. If no PRS and diminishing social housing, where are people who can’t afford mortgages going to live? Is this some kind of social experiment to eradicate renting or population control? I am an ex landlord & really feel for current l/l’s.


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