Coronavirus – Covid 19 – Open Letter To All Landlords And Tenants

Coronavirus – Covid 19 – Open Letter To All Landlords And Tenants

15:28 PM, 22nd March 2020, About 2 years ago 32

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Dear All

Every single human being on this planet is both concerned and affected by the Covid-19 Corona virus in different ways. During these difficult times, it is important that we all remain level-headed, which is why I am sharing my private thoughts with those of you who rent your home and those of you who own those properties.

Above all, please show compassion and think about what will happen when this crisis is over.

  1. A “rent holiday” or a “mortgage holiday” is not the same as free money. It MUST be repaid.
  2. If you are able to pay it is extremely important that you do so, for reasons covered later in this list.
  3. If you work for a business which has been closed then you will receive 80% of your salary subject to a maximum of £2,500 a month. On this basis, you should be able to afford at least 80% of your rent or mortgage payments, if not more, because you will not be spending money on fuel, commuting, socialising etc.
  4. If you are claiming benefits, these will be paid as normal, so you should be able to pay for everything as you previously did.
  5. Further clarification is necessary from Government in regards to how self-employed people (including landlords) will be assisted through this crisis.
  6. If you are genuinely unable to pay some or all of your rent or mortgage, then open and honest communication with your landlord or mortgage lender is essential from day one. To claim a payment holiday will require you to prove that you are unable to make payments in full due to the crisis. There is no free money, it will need to be repaid, plus interest.
  7. If you are able to do so, it is better to borrow money than to miss rent or mortgage payments. Having a roof over your head is one of the essentials in life, such as food and warmth.
  8. If landlords fall into arrears on their mortgage, without good reason, good communication and documentary evidence of all of that, it is highly likely that their mortgage lenders will take possession of the property and look to sell it with vacant possession. This might not happen immediately, but it will happen at some point. If this happens on a large scale, tenants will find it extremely difficult to find another property to rent for the same price.
  9. Landlords will be able to recover possession of their properties when this crisis is over, as will their mortgage lenders if they are in arrears. They will also be able to obtain judgement for debt. You will need a good credit profile to be able to buy or rent property in the future.
  10. Some landlords will have Rent Guarantee Insurance and Legal Fees Protection policies. This means that if you do not pay your rent an insurance company will pay your landlord instead. The problem with this is that the insurance company will then chase you for the rent arrears and pay all of the landlords legal costs to deal with your eviction and judgement for debt, as soon as they are allowed to do so. Landlords are unlikely to have any control over this once a claim has been made.
  11. It is the moral duty of us all to assist each other through this crisis and to ensure that a housing crisis doesn’t follow Covid-19.

Please take a long term view.

I welcome your comments.

God bless us all.



Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118 View Profile

15:30 PM, 22nd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Excellent article Anon, I will share on Facebook and other Social Media and encourage others to do the same.

Alex Russell

7:06 AM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Please can you up date this article when you know more about point 5? Because already have one tenant say she won't pay for 2 months because she has been laid off by easyjet but I still have to pay the mortgage and legally I can't evict her for 3 months (I believe!?). Not that I want to but I have no money to pay for her living.

Judith Wordsworth

9:27 AM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Brilliantly written. Many thanks

Judith Wordsworth

9:56 AM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

It might be worth adding, for those landlords with 1 or only a couple of rental properties, as a couple of creative Facebook groups I am a member of have said landlords should apply for Universal Credit if they need the rental income to live on, that Universal Credit applies a 10% value to any property not the landlords main home as a "savings asset" which will in all likelihood take the landlord over the UC maximum £16k savings threshold.

Denise G

11:50 AM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

many thanks - that is brilliant, very helpful and I have saved it and shared it on Facebook and Twitter

Dennis Leverett

12:01 PM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Judith Wordsworth at 23/03/2020 - 09:56
It's all common sense really but the problem is all the idiots/unscrupulous people who don't take it seriously. Apparently yesterday roads were blocked by people queuing to get into Tesco etc. stores and crowds of people queuing outside the stores to get in while inside was packed. Groups of people wandering around yesterday in parks etc. why don't they realise they can pick up the virus with no effect to themselves but pass it on to someone else. People are apparently stealing toilet rolls from public toilets!! I appreciate this virus is an unknown but 1000's of people die every year from flu/flu related infections, something like 83,000 in USA last year but they don't get all this help from governments, perhaps I'm missing something?? Employees only get 80% if the employer keeps them on the Pay roll.

Chris @ Possession Friend

12:09 PM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Very balanced article, which is more than can be said for the Governments response, which simply put is ;
'Lets just tell Tenants not to bother paying rent for 3 months because we're going to close the courts down and Prevent ALL evictions.
There are reports of Bailiff's not working in the foreseeable future. !
Well that has probably satisfied the protestations of the Labour party and a piece of proposed legislation that Giles Peaker and Justin Bates wrote for the Labour party ( enough said ! ) also, Shelter and all the Tenant protest groups ( of which I've lost count. )
There has been the usually weak response on behalf of Landlords from their 'representative' [sic] bodies.
In the turmoil of Covid-19, the Govt have lost sight of the many existing Possession claims, and future Possession claims that are NOT related to Covid-19.
Also, there are huge delays in the court process at present, If Justice is abandoned for 3 months, the existing system will simply not be able to cope when the restriction is lifted.

The Forever Tenant

12:44 PM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Dennis Leverett at 23/03/2020 - 12:01
The issue is not with the amount of deaths caused by the virus directly. For every person that has died, there are another 5 or so who are now on life support and another 25 who are taking up ICU spaces.

So its people with other serious health conditions that are dying of those as the doctors and nurses are spread thin trying to deal with all the issues ongoing.

Flu may have killed 81,000 or so last year, but the regular flu is also about 20 times less fatal. If left to spread unchecked without restrictions, you could be looking at a death count of 1,600,000. That's what all this is trying to prevent.

Dennis Leverett

13:06 PM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by The Forever Tenant at 23/03/2020 - 12:44
Flu related deaths in the UK last year was at its worst ever and its us oldies with flu related problems that are also overloading the NHS despite the flu jab being available. I had to spend some time in hospital 18 months ago and was on a "geriatric" ward and was shocked and found it quite upsetting, genuine flu is very unpleasant for people of all ages and often means more than just a few days off work, but low paid, self employed, zero hours contracts etc. don't get any help. I just get the feeling there's more to this than we the public know about.


23:26 PM, 23rd March 2020, About 2 years ago

Thank you for this.
My tenants have approached me regarding their rental payment although they are still working, so I will use some of this information for my response.

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