12 out of 13 tenants asked for “Rent-Free Holiday”?

12 out of 13 tenants asked for “Rent-Free Holiday”?

9:10 AM, 14th April 2020, About 2 years ago 72

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I have 13 single tenancies (family homes) in Reading. All houses are rented to Eastern European families. All tenants except 1 (in total 12 tenancies) contacted me in last 2 weeks and refused to pay me. None of tenants in question appear to know each other.

The reason given by all 12 tenants is:

“The government has decided that, Banks must give you holiday for 3 months, in return we must not pay you for 3 months” When I attempted to explain meaning of holiday does not mean complete waiving off rental payment it simply means deferring payment depending on their circumstances, which means they must reach another agreement as to how they will make payment after 3 months in addition I requested proof of their income being impacted. They have all refused to provide any proof when I raised the possibility to taking matter to Court, most of them suggested I will not be able to do this as all Courts are shut and government will not allow this.

This clearly shows that government has caused a huge confusion and all of tenants appear to think regardless of their circumstances this is “Rent-Free Holiday” I am very worried about this as even if my Bank allows me to take payment holiday which they will, nonetheless, Mortgage Company will simply allow Mortgage payment holiday, but will not replace rent.

My main source of Income is property income, which pays for my Tax, Maintenance and my Livelihood. In addition, if these tenants fail to bring their account up-to-date after 3 months then I would have lost £1000’s and would accumulate further Mortgage debt.



by David Price

10:29 AM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Blueskies at 15/04/2020 - 09:54
Unfortunately it applies to all claims for debt however initiated. The Protocol was designed to reduce the load on courts but as we all know rent is in an entirely different category to all other debt, in effect it is a voluntary payment to the landlord.

by dismayed landlord

10:29 AM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

hi David - yes i'll be interested as I think this is going to be the only option for me. Also many thanks for those responding and clearing up the RGI issue. Sadly I have the cheapo version with Direct line. Another error I have made. Though how does this sit with the companies paying out? The tenant on the face of it just gains by not having to pay the rent? Landlord gets his rent. Insurance company pays out. I assume the insurance company makes enough to live with it. Does it affect future premiums? If the tenant then pays can the landlord just keep the RGI payments. Tenant goes back to work with no rent arrears is great for them. And the landlord has a good chance of getting double bunny on the rent. Who actually pays for this?
On another note re Buckrogers and others, yes a few more properties taken out of the PRS but it will not affect anything. Same number of houses to go round. The tenant will be able to buy them (maybe even at a lower price following market collapse.) Or a foreign investment company can snap them up cheap. A bit more of England sold off in a time of crisis. Short sighted politicians 'selling England by the pound' (Genesis 1973 - misquote). However I am doing the same. As are several othe landlords in my area. I have even been contacted direct by others who know I am a landlord asking if I wish to buy theirs. The answer is no. Its not only what has gone before or even what is now the final nail (though this was not required for me) it is now the fear of what happens next (right on the button there Buckrogers) even when the pandemic is over. I am not big enough as a entity to ride it out and employ flash accountants to keep me ahead of the game. I am not poor enough to get all the government support and media backing. To claim for everything to be provided for me by the tax payer. I am in the middle. Hard working and sacrificing through my younger years to make a living. Only to reach the stage when I realise it was not worth it too late.

by Ingrid Bacsa

10:32 AM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by john mcghee at 14/04/2020 - 10:46
Are we still able to sell it empty if it is the home of a tenant? I thought the rules were changing and they are entitled to a home for life .

by Clint

10:35 AM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by David Price at 15/04/2020 - 10:29
I applied on MCOL for a debt three days ago and did not have any problem. It was issued yesterday and I did not find anything different in the process.

by David Price

10:43 AM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Clint at 15/04/2020 - 10:35
You will not have any problem making the claim but when it comes to court the Judge will ask if you went through the correct pre action protocol, and if the answer is no . . . . Case dismissed. You may of course be lucky and get a default judgement, that is a risk you have to take.

by Monty Bodkin

11:11 AM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Ian Narbeth at 15/04/2020 - 09:55
How would you advise Simon?

I wouldn't and didn't as it wouldn't be helpful and not add anything to the above.

Going forward I'm sure he has already realised selecting just one tenant profile isn't a very good idea.

I was poking fun at the Chris Voss theory as I'm also a fan. Wearing the tenant down into paying might not bring quick enough results.

It reminded me of the boring monotone he's perfected as part of his technique which is very similar to a character in the film 'The long good Friday'.


by Buckrogers

11:23 AM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Re. Dismayed landlord "it wont matter landlords selling up" I disagree, I think it will have an effect. I know a number of fellow landlords selling up, not on the cheap, but selling with vacant possession in a structured manner, light refurb and achieving market values so it's not other landlords buying, they're being sold to the open market. Operating in South Wales there are no build to rent schemes in the areas I operate, I know of one area where the letting agent has had a 40% reduction in rental stock. This surely must affect the supply and demand issue.

Yes for the landlords who are left the demand will drive up rents but for a terraced house achieving £500 a month it may now achieve £600 - £650, still for an extra £100 a month it is not worth it when the extra costs i.e. S24 and regulation costs are factored in. This is before the adjustments to S21!

by Anne Nixon

12:10 PM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Kate Mellor at 14/04/2020 - 14:35
Thanks for this Kate, I will adapt this to use if that's okay.

The accepted wisdom is to keep the dialogue going with tenants who may have had their income affected but despite trying hard from the outset with one HMO tenant, trying to keep the mood light and friendly, offering to defer payments until later etc she has for the most part not responded nor paid the March rent (so nothing since the end of Feb, £700 and counting . . .)

I don't know whether she is on furlough or Universal Credit as she won't respond, she has sent just the one text sending me a link to the Guardian COVID-19 page (no language problems, she is British).

I'm fuming - I was ready to be sympathetic and to work things out with her but that time has passed and I have come to the realisation that she has no good intentions and so I'm going to continue sending an occasional email as proof of attempts to make contact, trying not to get too stressed and trying to keep the tone professional until the stage when I can do something about it. What more can I do?

by Anne Nixon

12:19 PM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by David Price at 15/04/2020 - 09:46
Could I trouble you for a copy of your 'pre-action protocol' please David?
Many thanks in advance

by Clint

12:34 PM, 15th April 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by David Price at 15/04/2020 - 10:43
Is there any chance you could send a link to the pre action protocol on this forum as, I do not want to give out my contact details here.

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