No Respite for Landlords

No Respite for Landlords

13:56 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago 43

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The Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space) guidance was a shock to landlords when we heard about it this week. It is a truly atrocious bit of legislation, heaping even more worry and misery on landlords and also likely to have a very damaging effect on the prospects of any potential tenants looking for private accommodation who have any experience of mental health problems.

I have laid this out in an article this week, which I hope to get to the attention of the powers that be.  Hard cases make bad law: landlords, debt and mental health | TheArticle

The most egregious parts of the rules are the lack of any clear definition as to what constitutes a ‘serious’ mental illness and secondly the idea that someone facing a mental health crisis would be able to live rent-free until the crisis was over – however long this takes.

I have also laid out what this would mean for a landlord surviving on the state pension and the rent from one property. They could go from living on an income of £850pm to having to manage on £50. Of course, as we learned with the effects of Section 24, there will also be cases where they have to live on less than zero.

The worry for landlords unlucky enough to suddenly find their tenant is officially granted the ‘breathing space’ is going to be immense. It is of course already a common experience for landlords to suffer ill health because of their tenants.

Landlord, Bansi Soni, who was on dialysis and couldn’t sleep with worrying about her non-paying tenant said: ‘she’s still occupying my flat and currently owes me 11 months’ rent at £13,750.  The stress aggravated my physical condition which worsened the life-threatening infection I had and meant I had to be hospitalised.’

This was before this latest outrage.

Where is the consideration for or even acknowledgement of the financial and psychological strain that the Government is heaping on landlords?

What about landlords’ mental health? What kind of breathing space are we going to get? I think we all know the answer to that.

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Mick Roberts

14:53 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

I'm preparing a letter for MPs & Councils this week. I'll forward u when drafted, in fact I'll send u draft now, let me know initial thoughts.
As I've had enough, want to sell most of my houses, but tenants can't move any more cause of this onerous Legislation which Govt & Councils think is only impacting Landlords, whereas we know Hurt us u Hurt the tenant.


15:00 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

Any landlord renting now without a homeowner working guarantor needs their head looked at with what’s stacked up against them .. it’s been our policy for 9 months and not had one defaulter since

Katy Ann

16:44 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

Rosalind, I assume that what you're suggesting is that the various tiers of statutory protections which the relevant legislation affords to creditors, aren’t sufficient for landlords' needs. Is that right? My reading suggested that they actually achieve quite a reasonable balance in what is undoubtedly a difficult area.


16:50 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

Just had enough stress this year to last a lifetime. Have sold one property, currently have 2 more on the market and the rest will be sold when they become vacant. We have worked all our life, our life savings in good property only to find that we have no rights over what we own and the government are rewarding theft and taxing to death honesty. I thought the PM would know that communism fails everyone!

Whiteskifreak Surrey

17:00 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Carol at 25/01/2021 - 16:50
I am astonished that anyone does believe in Boris the Landlord Friend anymore.
He and his cronies hate private LLs probably more even than Shelter.
Every legislation is now laid out to kill the PRS and grab their distressed assets really quickly. Covid and brexit really helped to facilitate that strategy.

Dylan Morris

17:36 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

I can see even working tenants claiming mental illness and living rent free. Why wouldn’t you ? All part of the Great Reset..... “you will own nothing and you will be happy”.

Chris @ Possession Friend

17:52 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Katy Ann at 25/01/2021 - 16:44ALL businesses ( infact society ) only works when everyone 'plays by the same rules'
When government, and a supposed one on the side of business, tilts the rules in favour of those who breach their contract, impacting business owners - I don't call that striking a reasonable balance, or any balance at all.
Are you a landlord Katy, ? is it fine by you if your tenants don't pay their rent and aside from the massively unfair, delayed and expensive excuse for civil justice (sic) - the Govt comes up with another piece of legislation that freezes the debt and your ability to pursue Possession for two months.
Meanwhile during the moratorium - Breathing space, as its innocuously called ! debt advisors seek one of the many means to totally write off all the tenants debt, or at least 80% of it.. ( DRO's, IVA's Bankruptcy )

17:57 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

These loses will cause a tax loss for me will I be able to claim tax back I have paid in previous years

Katy Ann

18:15 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Chris @ Possession Friend at 25/01/2021 - 17:52
Yes Chris, I am indeed a landlord and have been for a number of years (hence being a member of this forum). I had a look at the relevant legislation and wasn’t particularly uncomfortable with it. As far as I can see, a tenant who wants to make use of the moratorium has to apply to an independent regulated body for a moratorium decision. I as a creditor have the right to have that decision reviewed and I can apply to the court for a judgement if I’m not content with the review outcome. A moratorium is only available to those who are in hospital or police custody or who are receiving similar care in the community for an acute mental health episode; I definitely don’t read that as tilting the rules in favour of anyone who's run up a debt. Others may find this piece of legislation threatening. It looked to me to be quite well-balanced in the protections it gave the various parties.

Steve Masters

18:30 PM, 25th January 2021, About 3 years ago

There are supposed to be measures in place to safeguard the creditor allowing the creditor to seek to overturn the breathing space if 'ongoing liabilities' are not met (eg T falls behind with rent during breathing space)
"The debt adviser must cancel the breathing space in respect of all or some of the debts if they agree with you unless the debt adviser thinks cancelling the breathing space is unfair or unreasonable due to the debtor’s personal circumstances."
The debt advisor might consider canceling the breathing space would put the debtor at risk of losing their home which would be 'unfair or unreasonable' and refuse to cancel. This needs to be clarified because this would be a nightmare.

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