Landlords accused of ‘kicking out’ tenants for asylum seekers

Landlords accused of ‘kicking out’ tenants for asylum seekers

8:01 AM, 9th November 2022, About 2 years ago 17

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A councillor has accused private landlords of kicking out tenants to make room for asylum seekers because the landlord can earn more in rent from the Home Office.

The accusation was made by Julie Young at a meeting of Colchester Borough Council’s scrutiny panel meeting after revelations that the city could soon be home to 500 refugees.

Coun Young, who is responsible for housing, reportedly told councillors: “Colchester does have more refugees than any other town, by a country mile.

“While we are a welcoming town, it does leave us with a situation where we have a huge task on our hands to support those individuals.”

‘Private landlords know they can get more money’

She then added: “Private landlords know they can get more money by making properties available to the Home Office.

“What we’re seeing is an increase in the amount of evictions that are going on in the town, to free up those properties so they can get additional revenue.”

The meeting heard that accommodation in Colchester will come under increasing pressure because they will have to accommodate refugees under the Home Office’s terms of resettlement.

Concerned about the number of asylum seekers who have been

Now, the council says it is concerned about the number of asylum seekers who have been arriving in designated hotels recently.

They say that sending asylum seekers to Colchester is putting already stretched council services under more pressure and this also impacts support organisations and local health services.

Council leader, Coun David King, said: “Colchester is proud to be a place of sanctuary. We have a long history of welcoming refugees and asylum seekers to our city-to-be.

“But I am angry at the Home Office’s failings and that we face new arrivals when others do not, when many of our partner authorities across the UK are not called upon to do their bit.”

He added: “We understand the pressures of the asylum system and that they use hotels as a short-term solution; but we get no advance warning from the Home Office when asylum seekers are placed in hotel accommodation, and we should, and need to, get adequate time for planning to make sure the much-needed wrap-around support is in place for these families.”

Caused concern in Worcester

The arrival of asylum seekers has also caused concern in Worcester where one councillor has highlighted that 20 homes, which will probably be houses in multiple occupancy, will be needed to house them.

Coun Alan Amos says that by reducing housing supply for local people, the move will ‘force up rent’ in a cost-of-living crisis.

One of the town’s hotels has already been changed into asylum seeker accommodation and is home to 115 people.

Contacting private landlords to sign them up

Now, Serco is looking to house more asylum seekers and contacting private landlords to sign them up.

Councillor Amos told the Worcester Observer that while allocating 20 to 30 properties will have a minimal effect on a rented stock of several thousand properties, it does mean that people in need of accommodation will have fewer properties to choose from.

He added that there are more than 3,000 people on the town’s housing waiting list and criticised the priority given to housing ‘illegal immigrants’ and worried that approval has been recommended by the council for the housing scheme despite not knowing how much it will cost local taxpayers.

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16:31 PM, 9th November 2022, About 2 years ago

Another, non story ,
seems like any Nobody can use sensationalist anti landlord rhetoric and get in the "papers ,news articles " these days .

LordOf TheManor

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18:53 PM, 9th November 2022, About 2 years ago

Nothing more than the usual codswallop!

No government ever revisits any of their 'top-down' social policies over the track of time to check for the adverse affects or work-arounds made from the 'bottom-up'. Blame Mrs T for selling off social housing and not replacing it with a housing model fit for the future as known in the late 1970s and re-informed by the national census data sets of 1981 and 1991.

Did the non-replacement of social housing get debriefed after the culling was done? If not, is that the fault of today's private landlords??

After 1987, private rented accommodation became available for short term needs and created freedom of economic movement in the UK. It meant that work relocating personnel or graduates could find a place near their new employment; it was access to a starter home for grown-up children leaving home; it provided short term housing needs due to house sale chain-breaking, family break-ups, new blended family set-ups, insurance-paid re-housing after fire or flood and all sorts of housing situations that would be overcome in the short term of 6 months - 2 years. It worked!

The origin of the PRS has been lost in the deliberate fog created by the governmental neglect of the housing market. All the people types above exist as much today as ever - the difference is that they now have to compete with the supply shortage. This supply got reduced in the aftermath of the sell-off by long term social tenants who got moved into the PRS when nothing else was available to them. That they had to claim housing benefit to pay or top up their rent was never a suprise to a landlord.

As a result, today's 'ready, willing and able' economically active and progressive workforce cannot access accommodation near their employment hubs or in areas nearby. The lack of normal churn in the PRS has long since stymied that.

The councillors in the leading article will bleat on indefinitely with their 'victim culture' unless they broaden their view and support all sectors of society.

All areas need wage and fee earners to support the local economy! With so many at the basic level of subsistence needing housing & on-going funding, what are the said councillors doing to attract the wage-earning community?

Are these councillors equally battling for greater broadband in their area - if not, why not? It looks like their low-watt energy is spent on regurging factoids of landlord fictional activity with the bottom end of the market.

Are these bleating councillors and others like them genuinely interested in making substantial improvements in the long-standing contemporary housing crisis and the on-going emergency needs of today and tomorrow?? If so, they need to get going el-quicko on a campaign at national level to insist that the housing minister is declared a permanent member of the Cabinet.

Until that is achieved, let's hope they spare us from further unfounded bleatings - aka spitting in the wind. It is seriously boring!


PS: Councillors/MPs: How about starting by finding a suitably interested Minister of Housing? With 20 housing ministers since 1997 (average of 1.25 years served by each) why not bleat instead about the failings and lack of continuity of this Ministry?

PPS: The average PRS tenant (non-social one) is around 4.5 years. Cottage industry landlords therefore out-live the Ministry's experience 3.6 times over. Who, therefore, has more of a handle of the day to day functioning of the PRS??


Old Mrs Landlord

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23:46 PM, 9th November 2022, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by LordOf TheManor at 09/11/2022 - 18:53
Lord, you don't seem to have got the message yet. You dare to question the current zeitgeist. You have the temerity to ask " that the fault of today's private landlords?" Of course it is! All forms of media, whether social or news, tell us daily that everything that's wrong with today's Britain is the fault of private landlords unless it can be blamed on Putin. No-one is interested in the role we play in keeping a roof over the heads of people who cannot or do not want to buy a home, only in our twin roles as scapegoat for every social injustice and perceived source of unlimited tax revenue.


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10:38 AM, 10th November 2022, About 2 years ago

Maybe the government should put pressure on the Bank of England to stop raising interest rates, which is having no effect other increased financial pain for people who cannot reduce their spending on essentials such as energy and food no matter what the rates are and also on the banks, who are currently making massive profits by raising interest rates when they don't need to. That way landlords are not then forced to either increase rents or find other tenants who will bring in more money, just to cover their mortgages.

Reluctant Landlord

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23:19 PM, 10th November 2022, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Justin Barrington at 09/11/2022 - 11:34
I got a call back from Serco (after I received then posted their initial email response on this site under another thread.

The chap asked if I was still interested... I replied quite calmly. No bloody way!

He asked why and I gave him all the feedback (and more ) and also the whole schpeil about the whole hornet nest of liabilities the LL would face as a result of their 'generous' contract. Oh and yes - and the cost of building insurance for 'asylum seekers' (even if you could get it!) would be on par with the GDP of Botswana.

He then asked what I would do with my empty properties. I explained that I had offered them to the council for them to use for a family temp accommodation for a long as they wished, but they didn't want to know (they didn't want to be the direct Landlord). I told them that I would not accept any direct benefit claimants as they had no referencing not guarantor. I explained that as the area was full of large houses (many now HMO's) private payers could not either want/afford the size of the property, or didn't want to be close to HMO's.

I explained there were now for sale. Probably to be sold to a FTB, or possibly someone who will make it into an HMO (just not bother to make it 'official')

Outcome 1. one less rental property . Outcome 2. A risk of 5 tenants being housed by an unscrupulous LL in terrible conditions.

I suggested it would be far cheaper if Serco bought my properties (ANY private properties) for themselves, then they could have fun in practically rebuilding them from the inside out on year 4 - just as the would be expecting me to do in their 'generous contract/.

I left the call by wishing HIM luck finding ANY private landlords willing to sign up....

Claire Smith

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10:13 AM, 12th November 2022, About 2 years ago

She should be forced to give her evidence or apologise for this slander. Also, what on earth makes her think that they have a high number of refugees? The number she quoted is what our town has been taking per year!


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13:23 PM, 13th November 2022, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Rerktyne at 09/11/2022 - 12:27
'Renting to illegal immigrants' don't make me laugh. Firstly, legitimate asylum seekers are exactly that- they are not illegal. Letting to Illegal immigrants would be more risky then UK residents. Secondly, asylum seekers are a safe bet if the government are going to pay their rent. Its guaranteed income.

All this is populist fantasy from a low-level politician trying to justify his total non-job and keep his seat.

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