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David Cox, Chief Executive, ARLA Propertymark comments on the story from Shelter and National Housing Federation about discrimination in the rental sector:
“This is a systemic problem with how housing benefit works. Rents are paid in advance, whereas housing benefit is paid in arrears, and therefore with such a shortage of rental accommodation, landlords and agents will naturally choose a tenant who can pay the rent when it is due, rather than a tenant who is always a month in arrears.
“We have called on Government time and time again to resolve this problem. But our calls have fallen on deaf ears. To make the situation worse, many lenders also have a clause in their buy-to-let mortgage agreements which prevent landlords from letting to housing benefit tenants. This situation does not exist because of landlords or letting agents, it is a systemic problem caused by Government and the banks.”
Click Here to view the campaign by the National Housing Federation and Shelter:
“People receiving benefits are often locked out of the private rented sector and openly discriminated against by private landlords and estate agent adverts, who specify ‘no DSS’ or ‘no housing benefit’.
We’re partnering with Shelter on a new campaign, making the case that private landlords and letting agents shouldn’t be allowed to do this.”
“Many housing associations were set up in the 1950s and 1960s to house people who could find nowhere else to live due to racism from private landlords and letting agents who told them no Irish, no blacks, no dogs. Fast-forward to 2018 and we still have outright bans, this time because people depend on Housing Benefit. We believe this is not right and must stop.
So together, with Shelter, we’re calling for landlords and letting agents to see sense and assess people on a case by case basis, not through policy bans, and for the Government to urgently invest in the building of new affordable housing.”
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