David Lawrenson

Registered with Property118.com
Tuesday 2nd July 2013


Latest Comments

Total Number of Property118 Comments: 316

David Lawrenson

10:33 AM, 17th January 2020
About 3 days ago

New electrical checks and safety standards for Landlords

I share the concerns of Seething Landlord and Pete Lightowler about this.

It seems to me, that especially when it comes to electric standards, the regulations seem to conveniently change so often, so that one is always non-compliant with whatever recent change has come in, since the last inspection - hence more work for the Sparkies and more cost for the landlord.

There is always some body or other that seems to be pushing for new standards or creating concerns out of thin air - think the Japanese Knotweed eradication "industry", the damp proofing "industry" etc.

I think perhaps more involvement of government is needed to scrutinise whether whatever new standard the electricians bodies have proposed is really necessary.

https://www.lettingfocus.com/blogs/2015/11/japanese-knotweed-damp-proofing-and-electric-nonsense/

David Lawrenson
http://www.LettingFocus.com
Author of "Successful Property Letting"... Read More

David Lawrenson

16:32 PM, 15th January 2020
About 5 days ago

Shelter research playing on fears

Yes, a very neat succinct rebuttal from the RLA setting out the facts.
(RLA was always the slightly better of the two main landlords organisations (now merging) at this sort of straight PR message).

Re other comments re letting agencies trying to bounce landlords to put up rents and /or issue a new fixed term tenancy, I'm afraid this is still widespread among some rapacious agents and it is often done to generate extra fees for the agent from the landlords.

Newbie landlords are often none the wiser, knowing nothing about statutory periodic tenancies.

It really highlights the need for even hands off landlords to understand the basics of letting, different sorts of tenancies and the scope and limits of what a letting agent can and should be doing for them. If they don't they risk being milked by some letting agents.

David Lawrenson
http://www.LettingFocus.com
Author "Successful Property Letting - How to Make Money in Buy to Let"... Read More

David Lawrenson

11:31 AM, 14th January 2020
About 6 days ago

DWP announce Local Housing Allowance increase in line with CPI

Ah, so this is a piece of good news.

The past freeze on this benefit, is actually a form of rent control in miniature.

The long decoupling of the LHA/ HB rate from local market rent levels just led to landlords exiting this end of the market in droves and putting up an effective "No Housing Benefit" sign.

So desperate is the problem that now, my local council, Bexley, like others no doubt, is paying up to £8,000 to house people from off their homeless register.

Effectively the freezing of rates is a form of rent control, which is why I like to tell people that they don't need to look to other cities or past times to show "Rent Control Charlies" that rent control does not work and always leads to a lessening of rental accommodation and a reduced quality of accommodation, you can just point to the effect right now that freezing housing benefit rates has had.

https://www.lettingfocus.com/blogs/category/rent-controls/

David Lawrenson
http://www.LettingFocus.com
Private Rented Sector Advice... Read More

David Lawrenson

11:17 AM, 14th January 2020
About 6 days ago

Landlords Victory in Liverpool

Well done indeed.

As you rightly point out, how can all of the Liverpool area be an area of "low housing demand", (whatever that even means).

There always seems to be a large number of ahem, "property gurus" who are often pushing the city as the next great property investment, to their followers. I can't comment on the merits of that as I am not an expert in Liverpool's strength as an economy, but all this seems very hard to square with it being an area of supposedly low housing demand.

Focused licensing in problem areas and where the emphasis is not on collecting money from the law abiding landlords, but being proactive and going after the criminals in the sector, who are hiding in plain sight, letting hugely overcrowded properties to the very vulnerable and to illegal immigrants - this ought to be the priority. And success in prosecuting and putting out of business the criminals ought to be the only metric that's being measured.

David Lawrenson
http://www.LettingFocus.com
Author of "Successful Property Letting"... Read More

David Lawrenson

11:41 AM, 9th January 2020
About 2 weeks ago

Weakest decade for house price growth since 90s but picture is mixed

And where will house prices be headed in the future?
Merryn Somerset Webb of the FT wrote a very interesting piece quoting very long term research, in which she concluded that house prices will not go up very much at all, may even fall.

It was a very interesting piece, which I quote here:
https://www.lettingfocus.com/blogs/2018/12/will-house-prices-keep-rising/
However, I did not agree with her conclusions.

There are many determinants of house prices over time, but looking at demographics, economic measures (income growth and its distribution) and amount of housing supply forecast are good places to start!

David Lawrenson
http://www.LettingFocus.com
Private Rented Sector Advice and Consulting... Read More