Campaigns

Landlord case studies needed

letting agent fees
Sally Walmsley
Written by Sally Walmsley

Here at the RLA we are committed to fighting for a fair deal for our landlords through campaigning in corridors of Westminster and in the regional, trade and national press.

To help maximise coverage of our campaigns work we are asking for landlords who are willing to speak to journalists about their experiences to get in touch.

At present we are focusing on the devastating impact the Government’s changes to Mortgage Interest Relief will have on landlords, but we are also keen to talk to those who will be affected by the Government’s new minimum energy efficiency standards, regional licensing schemes and the new stamp duty rules.

We are also keen for landlords to talk about their experiences of buy-to-let on our website to help us dispel the lazy stereotypes bandied about in the media. The so-called rogue landlord is in the minority – lets get some positive stories out there.

Anyone interested in getting involved is asked to email  the campaigns team.

About the author

Sally Walmsley

Sally Walmsley

Sally Walmsley is the Communications Manager for the RLA and Editor of RPI magazine. With 16 years’ experience writing for regional and national newspapers and magazines she is responsible for producing articles for our Campaigns and News Centre, the weekly E-News newsletter and editorial content for our media partners.

She issues press releases promoting the work of the RLA and its policies and campaigns to the regional and national media and works alongside the marketing team on the association’s social media channels to build support for the RLA and its work.

1 Comment

  • I have been brushed off by my Tory Eurosceptic MP (Who I voted for and used to like).
    Below is what I have sent to the consultation on the Fixing Our Broken Housing Market White Paper:
    Dear Sirs
    I have just waded through the on-line consultation survey on the white Paper, and found quite a lot of interest to comment on.
    However, I went there after I had raised issues regarding the treatment of small private landlords with my MP (Justin Tomlinson) at his suggestion.
    I was disappointed to find that there was no question relating to this important group of housing suppliers, so I am putting my feedback here.

    I have been involved with design, planning and small scale housing development for most of my working life, I am now semi-retired managing 10 properties owned by members of my family and rented to local households. I am a member of the RLA and aim to provide an excellent service to our tenants. The properties are kept in good condition, issues are dealt with quickly and rents are generally at the low end of current market spread.

    This is a business, I am almost permanently on call, and work hard to keep things running smoothly and efficiently. It is not a quick profit for no work jolly. You are saying that you are committed to providing more good quality housing in all sectors. So why has this white paper come out with minimal reference to our important sector and no proposal for reform of the very damaging tax burdens added by the last chancellor?

    If somebody was to look at a tax efficient way to store their money, they would buy the most expensive single house that they could afford regardless of their own actual living requirements. There would be no additional 3% stamp duty and no tax grab from legitimate expenses.
    We self manage so we will not be affected if the proposal to ban agent’s fees to tenants goes ahead, but if we were it would be just another nail in the coffin for a previously good business.

    As small landlords we have not done this, we have invested in smaller properties and provided those surplus to our needs to other households.
    I say have done, because we are very unlikely to invest in further properties while the purchase bears extra tax and our business expenses cannot be set against tax in full. We have also picked our properties carefully for the rental market, so it is unlikely that we were competing with serious 1st time buyers and contributing to ‘pricing them out of the market’.

    This current regime does nothing to increase the input of good small landlords, and worse, nothing to discourage the bad, that we would all like to see leaving the market.

    On the subject of longer tenancies, as none of these properties are needed for our own home we have no problem in principle with longer tenancies, in fact they suit us. Changeovers cost money and time, much more than maintaining a happy tenant. I do personally have 1 tenant who has been in place for over 20 years, our average excluding him is about 2 years. These tenancies are always ended by the tenant’s choice, not ours, unless there is a serious breach of the terms. So the reasons why we do not start with longer tenancies, but 6 months which then rolls on as a periodic tenancy are:
    Lenders requirements
    Some Freeholders demands for registration and payment for longer terms.
    Concern that it would be more difficult to get the tenant out quickly if they turn out to be problematic. ie don’t pay the rent or mess the place up.
    However, if we were to offer really long tenancies of say 5 years or more, I think there would have to be break clauses for both sides in case circumstances change.

    I have a small point to mention on the online survey form. There were a number of references, intending that one could look up the source material, but unfortunately they did not generally say which document they were in (Framework, or Fixing the Market), the worst were ‘Box 4’ and ‘footnote 9’.
    these are both long documents, and searches did not provide the desired results, so very time consuming to track down. This seems to be an elementary error that should have been checked before going live.

    I hope that you find these comments useful, and would very much appreciate your serious consideration of the plight of small private landlords who are being seriously penalised for providing much needed housing.

    Kind Regards, Carolyn Phillippo BA(Arch)DipHI.

    I hope every little helps!!!

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