London Renters Union Covid-19 template letter

by Property118.com News Team

11:51 AM, 23rd March 2020
About 8 months ago

London Renters Union Covid-19 template letter

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London Renters Union Covid-19 template letter

The London Renters Union have released a template letter for tenants (see below) requesting a suspension of payments until the Coronavirus situation improves. They appear to be insinuating that landlords are being given help by lenders suspending mortgage payments and that tenants haven’t been offered any corresponding assistance.

The LRU state: “It’s good news that the government has announced a ban on evictions, but the government hasn’t taken any action to suspend rent payments. While landlords are being given a mortgage holiday, huge numbers of renters who are losing their incomes will soon be clocking up huge amounts of debt in rent arrears.”

Template Letter offered:

Dear X

We hope you’re keeping well in these really strange and fast-changing circumstances! We’re watching developments about COVID-19 very closely and are, as you might imagine, really concerned. We work in ________ and live paycheck to paycheck each month. We’re going to be earning much less over the coming months. We rarely have more than one month’s rent available at any one moment.

[add more details about your situation – make it as personal as you feel comfortable to]

For these reasons, we kindly request a suspension of payments until the situation improves.

Many renters across the country are in a similar situation. As you might have heard, the government has announced a three month mortgage holiday for all landlords whose tenants are experiencing financial difficulties due to coronavirus. The government and the National Residential Landlords Association are asking landlords to show compassion.

We hope, for ourselves and for everyone’s sake, that life becomes more stable as soon as possible. Until then, it seems all we can do is be pragmatic, avoid panic, and support each other as best we can. We hope you can consider this. Do let us know if speaking on the phone would be helpful.

Looking forward to hearing your response.


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Comments

Simon Williams

9:35 AM, 24th March 2020
About 8 months ago

I love that term "mortgage holiday". Sounds nice. Gets me thinking of palm trees and white sandy beaches.

All it means is you rack up more debt because the payments due are deferred with interest. Whereas I presume this letter is asking for rent payments simply to be cancelled "until the situation improves" - and God knows when that will be.

The government's support measures should go a long way to ensuring that the great majority of tenants can continue to pay either all or at least a reasonable portion of the rent.

At the heart of all this is the myth that all landlords are rolling in cash and can just take the hit. "You've got an asset!" they say. Fat lot of good that does when it's either unsaleable and/or it's value has crashed through the floor.

Meanwhile, many of us also pay bills on rental properties, be it service charge, council tax, utilities, income tax etc. Shall we service those liabilities out of thin air?

Compassion yes. But common sense also.

Luke P

10:09 AM, 24th March 2020
About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Simon Williams at 24/03/2020 - 09:35
You may only own 5% of that asset, but because you are lent ‘the whole’ and everyone can see the entirety of the bricks and mortar that is under your guardianship, they presume it’s ‘yours’.

Mike

12:04 PM, 24th March 2020
About 8 months ago

We should have a template letter for landlord response.

Matarredonda

12:08 PM, 24th March 2020
About 8 months ago

For far to long the Government and renters backed by groups like this have implied landlords are rolling in cash.
They forget if we did not provide the service they would not have a home.
It is forgotten for many many of us it is the largest part of either our daily income or our pension income.
If a tenant refuses to cooperate by paying say 80% we have nothing we can do except explain there costs will be down as can't go to pub, restaurant, etc but any unpaid rent is a debt which will need paying when this over.
Those who are out of work because of the situation need to go immediately to apply for housing benefit.

Matarredonda

12:11 PM, 24th March 2020
About 8 months ago

For far to long the Government and renters backed by groups like this hacmve implied landlords are rolling in cash.
They forget if we did not provide the service they would not have a home.
It is forgotten for many many of us it is the largest part of either our daily income or our pension income.
If a tenant refuses to cooperate by paying say 80% we have nothing we can do except explain there costs will be down as can't go to pub, restaurant, etc but any unpaid rent is a debt which will need paying when this over.
Those who are out of work because of the situation need to go immediately to apply for housing benefit.

Richard Adams

12:37 PM, 24th March 2020
About 8 months ago

Agree with all comments above. Trouble is tenants, and everyone, seem to think a "holiday" means mortgage payments are sort of waived full stop until crisis ends. Holiday means when crisis is over lender will be asking for the monthly payments not paid. Namely a loan. Equally tenants don't appreciate that a rental "holiday" means the same thing. How many tenants will be able even if inclined to do so, to enter into a repayment schedule of "holiday" rent not paid during the crisis? Answer very few if any. So eviction banned during the crisis will follow on account of unpaid rent.

Luke P

13:34 PM, 24th March 2020
About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Richard Adams at 24/03/2020 - 12:37
It was a disastrous choice of a word.

Mick Roberts

17:08 PM, 29th March 2020
About 8 months ago

Give 'em my list of outgoings here & ask how we pay them? Many of these new outgoings like Licensing etc. the renters have asked for these. If you want a brand new house, we all know New-builds cost more money.

U can use my text if u like. Or parts of it. It may not seem nice for those who don't know me or my tenants, but I started to get my majority benefit tenants to try it on (Well 2 of them-The rest supported me & the some others were about to ask me before saying Thanks to explaining to them that moron Corbyn had misled them).

Some of you lovely people have been texting asking for a rent holiday cause of the coronavirus. Now if u all want a rent holiday, there will be no houses no homes in 3 months, simple as that. There's not a magic tree out there to pay your outgoings.

The comment you may have heard on the media this week has not helped tenants at all. Corbyn Labour Anti Landlord tripe saying tenants can ask for a rent holiday was aimed at workers who have lost their job & FULL income & got to wait for benefits which YOU ARE ALREADY GETTING, but some of u r rubbing your hands in glee thinking that was aimed at u.

And it was a rent holiday, some of u have interpreted that as Ooh baby no rent to pay. The workers still had to pay when they get back on their feet. Some of u have got into arrears with me before & took years to pay & some still paying off now years later. You text saying Can I have rent holiday cause of coronavirus, then u also don't say I'll pay next week.

Some of u have been with me over 20 years, most of u over 5 to 10 years. I look after u the best I can despite all the constant recent attacks from Council and Govt. But I will not look after people trying to take advantage and plunge me and u into losing your home.

If I get one more text from someone on FULL benefits asking for rent holiday, I'm gonna' seriously consider selling your home. Some of u will know I'm only keeping the houses for you as it is your home & I respect that.
Please don't exploit the Coronavirus for financial gain and put everyone's else's home in jeapordy.

If you've genuinely lost your job, ring me & we'll get u on the benefits u entitled to.
If u not earning enough, u claim benefits. If u getting too much to claim benefits, the Govt are saying u r earning enough to pay your rent, so u don't need benefits. It's either one or the other.

We're not a large financial institution, so not able to bear the hardship, that would be inevitable result of rental holidays, so please look towards Govt support, as it is them and Councils that resulted in the below costs.

Below is the extra costs which the Govt & Councils has forced upon us, which I've now had to pay since u moved into your home. How some of u think this can be paid with no rent in is baffling.

We now have to do Fitness tests on new rentals £150 each house.
Electrical Installation Condition reports organisation & implementation £300+ each house.
Selective Licensing £890 just for one house.
Legionnaires checks £70 each house.
EPC’s £80 each house.
Data protection checks £40.
Carbon Monoxide detectors & smoke detectors, when wired, £300 each house.
Getting registered with Information Commission officer £40.
Floorplans, Inventories £90 each house.
Landlord has to criminal check himself & has to prove he has Right to live in UK
Increased staffing admin behind the scenes.
As you’ve seen, checks/inspections on your houses now with smoke alarms-Should be much more detailed checks.
Consultant & Legal fees to keep pace with legislation & staff training.
Letting Agent costs for new tenancies & house swaps £70pm each house.
All the above is extra costs we din’t have when many of u moved in.

Landlords are selling in their hundreds due to the increase in costs & the burden of ever increasing legislation.
Landlords are being fined when they get something slightly wrong.

As a company, we are really struggling to keep abreast with these constant legislation attacks, so much so, some of u know all new ones/swaps, we are having to place with Letting Agent.

The biggest changes are Selective Licensing & Universal Credit. Costs an absolute fortune in time & money to keep on top of it.

There are many Landlords out there who aren’t compliant, who are becoming unstuck every week.

We have no intention of selling on you & want you for the long term. Please help us to help u.


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