Older tenants fear being evicted as rents rise

Older tenants fear being evicted as rents rise

0:03 AM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago 25

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Almost half of older private tenants had their rent raised in the past year, and more than one in five can no longer comfortably afford to pay their bills, a survey reveals.

The ‘Hidden Renters’ report published by Independent Age, found that 45% of older private renters had experienced a rent increase, with more than half of the rises being between £50 and £200 per month.

Anxiety about being able to pay to stay where they live was reported among many of the respondents, all of whom were 65 and over.

While that feeling was more common among those on housing benefit (51%), anxiety was still prevalent among 42% of those not receiving such help, the charity said.

‘Scraping by so we can afford our rent’

John Palmer, the director of influencing and engagement at Independent Age, said: “None of us expect to live our later years scraping by so we can afford our rent.

“But for many older private renters, this is their reality.”

The survey also found that 15% of respondents said they had less than £100 of disposable income to spend each month after paying rent, leaving little to cover food and bills.

Privately renting across the country

The charity also interviewed more than 40 older tenants in the first three months of the year who were living on a low income and privately renting across the country.

It also took onboard insights from advisers on its national helpline and advice services.

The organisation said the threat of eviction is a real fear for many people given the ‘lack of alternative affordable housing for older people’.

Independent Age said it was calling for the government to act to ‘fix the broken private rental sector’.

‘We regularly hear from older renters’

Polly Neate, the chief executive of the homelessness charity Shelter, told the i newspaper: “We regularly hear from older renters who have worked for decades in search of safety and security in later life but are now being condemned to live out their senior years in cramped, damp or run-down properties.

“Others have been left desperately scrambling after their landlord issued a Section 21 no-fault eviction notice, giving them just two months to find a new home.”

She added: “Instead of leaving older renters at the mercy of a broken and underregulated private renting system, the Government must keep its word, and get the Renters (Reform) Bill over the line to finally ban Section 21 evictions and make renting safer and fairer for everyone.”


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Comments

Monty Bodkin

7:12 AM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Obvious consequences of driving out private landlords.

Monty Bodkin

7:15 AM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Has Polly Neate watched the YouTube clip showing the consequences of driving out private landlords?

Teessider

9:20 AM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Another pointless call for the Renters (Reform) Bill to end Section 21. Another misleading claim that the Section 21 is a no-fault eviction.
I’m afraid that the RRB may not be the panacea that supporters believe it to be.
Section 8 has a number of grounds that are the result of no fault from the tenant. They plan to introduce more under the RRB.
Section 21 is often used in lieu of Section 8. This is because it is less stressful and could be less expensive. It’s also a kinder option for the tenant.
If my better tenants stay with me to 65, they will have been my tenants for around 35 years. I’ll work with them to make their rents affordable, even if that means my profits take a hit. Any less respectful tenants will not be treated so kindly (it’s called karma, I believe) and their rents will be closer to market rates.
Ageing tenants is an almost inevitable risk and something that all landlords should plan for. We can help. We should help. Plan to have a mixture of young and old tenants.

Paul Essex

12:37 PM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Older landlords are living in fear of not being able to evict problem tenants and loosing their hard earned savings.

Sorry if this is offensive to the 'charities'

Beaver

13:16 PM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Whichever party comes to power needs to look learn from the really bad policies that are out there (introduced by SNP, conservative and labour dominated central and local or devolved governments) and learn from them.

They also need to learn from a good one. That's the HMRC rent-a-room scheme. And when they look at that they need to consider the fact that at present you are not allowed to rent to members from more than one family under the rent-a-room scheme.

Reluctant Landlord

14:13 PM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

sorry to sound harsh but age has nothing to do with it in reality. It is the ability to pay the rent. Those on benefits are income 'capped' so again no room for manourvre of there is a genuine rent increase, just like pensions.
Most landlords in this day and age (fearful of getting nightmare tenants in) will in the main keep rents as affordable for that tenant as best they can, but the reality is if you rent your rent might well increase and if you cannot afford it, it shoudlbe your personal responsibilty to do somethign about it if you can't.
The landlord is NOT the one that has to house you. You have to house you!
I apprecite that the current market might mean that it may be difficult to find elsewhere in your budget but if that is the case then the tenant has to look to compremise on where they live etc. This is not the choice a LL can make.
Personal responsibility means just that.

Old Mrs Landlord

14:41 PM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Polly Neate talks about the "underregulated private renting sector" - yet another of her deliberate misstatements of facts. She knows full well how over-regulated the PRS is and has herself been responsible for some of the recent additional regulations which have caused landlords to sell up. .

Teessider

15:35 PM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Reluctant Landlord at 18/09/2023 - 14:13
Why does ‘personal responsibility’ only apply to those who support themselves?

If it wasn’t for Housing Benefits, rents and house prices would be lower. Elderly tenants on small pensions are competing with HB claimants. The playing field ain’t level.

Beaver

15:46 PM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Teessider at 18/09/2023 - 15:35
Some elderly tenants are unable to take in lodgers.

Some elderly property owners are living in large properties from which they cannot afford to move because they will be nailed by stamp duty land tax or for other reasons. Some of these elderly people could benefit more from the rent-a-room scheme if it applied to more than one family.

northern landlord

16:39 PM, 18th September 2023, About 9 months ago

Sadly this is a reality. People can’t afford to buy so they rent. All the time they are earning and receive pay rises it’s OK but as soon as they give up work and rely on a fixed income that’s when the problems start. There are probably many landlords who are helping such tenants especially if they are long standing by keeping rents as low as possible but this can only be done up to a point. What if the landlord wants to sell? If the tenant is already essentially getting a subsidised rent they won’t be able to afford anywhere else. I am sure that this plays on some non- professional landlords minds.
This will not be a worry if we all become more professional as we are always being told we should be. Being a professional means a total non- sentimental business- like approach. Can’t get a decent return from retired older tenants on fixed incomes? Tough! Out they go! Prospective new tenants stand in line with your bank statements and guarantors at the ready for scrutiny! Welcome to the new corporate PRS.

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