Today’s budget represents a nightmare for tenants and landlords alike. A failure to extend support for energy improvements in private rented housing and measures to allow subletting will cause uncertainty and anger claims the Residential Landlords Association.
Energy and landlord organisations had called upon the Chancellor to extend the Landlord’s Energy Savings Allowance which is due to end next month. The allowance has played a key role in supporting landlords to invest in improving the energy efficiency of their properties.
The failure to continue the allowance means improvements will now only be financed on the back of tenants through their energy bills as contained within the Green Deal.
Commenting, RLA Chairman, Alan Ward said:
“It is disappointing that Ministers have failed to listen to campaigners on this issue.
“Ministers have talked the talk on improving the energy efficiency of the nation’s rented housing stock but today they have pulled the rug from under the feet of landlords and tenants.”
The Budget also outlines plans to make it illegal for private sector tenancy agreements to include clauses that prevent the sub-letting of the property.
Alan Ward continued:
“The measures on sub-letting are a nightmare in the making and smack of ‘back of the fag packet’ policy making.
“Key questions remained unanswered such as who will be responsible for a property if the tenant sub-letting leaves the house but the tenant they are sub-letting to stays?
“Similarly, given the Government wants landlords to check the immigration status of their tenants, who would be responsible for checking the status where sub-letting occurs?
“Whilst the RLA awaits further detail on this measure, it is difficult to see landlords supporting it.”
- Details of the Landlord’s Energy Savings Allowance can be found at https://www.gov.uk/landlords-energy-saving-allowance.
- Page 51 of the Budget Red Book available at https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/413949/47881_Budget_2015_Web_Accessible.pdf outlines measures to “make it easier for individuals to sub-let a room” through the Government’s intention “to legislate to prevent the use of clauses in private fixed-term residential tenancy agreements that expressly rule out sub-letting or otherwise sharing space on a short-term basis, and consider extending this prohibition to statutory periodic tenancies.