Tag Archives: asylum seekers

Why do we value Asylum Seekers more than British homeless? Landlord News, Latest Articles

Hello, This is another of those strange anomalies/priorities which make little sense. We pick up thousands of asylum seekers in boats crossing the channel and some have no right to be here.

We’ve all seen reports of the overcrowded centres where they start, but what about the luxury hotels that they are sometimes housed in?

Then Serco, instructed by the Govt, are offering landlords more in rent for their properties than the rent they are currently getting. Why? What about our homeless?

Many of them are British citizens, people down on their luck who have had mortgages, paid council tax and contributed for years to British tax and society. Are they not more deserving of our generosity?

Some of them are ex-service personnel who, in addition, have fought for our country. Where is the rhyme or reason in all of this?

Our country is upside down, vilifying landlords, protecting new arrivals – crazy.

Grahame


Landlords accused of ‘kicking out’ tenants for asylum seekers Buy to Let News, Landlord News, Latest Articles, Lettings & Management, Property Investment News, Tenant Eviction

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.


Serco contract details – Asylum accommodation request? Landlord News, Latest Articles, Lettings & Management

Hello everyone, I’ve just had a reply from Serco regarding their offer to take a properties to be used by the Home Office for asylum seeker use….

I welcome any comments good or bad – what do you think of this? What other questions do you have? Pitfalls?

———————-

Thank you for your enquiry to Serco.

Serco currently operates the Asylum Accommodation Support Contract (AASC) within the North West of England, East of England and Midlands and are looking to expand our portfolio within these areas.

Our business model supports Investors, Landlords and Agents in the drive to return a profitable yield, within a legal and ethical framework which can only benefit both the occupier and landlord.

What we can offer:
A 7-year lease with an FSE 250 company, with an option to renew
Blue Chip Tenants
Day-to-day maintenance and repairs undertaken at no cost to the landlord
Guaranteed Rent (paid monthly by BACS when you hand over the keys)
Monthly property inspections
Council Tax and utilities paid
No void properties
No Management Fees. No Legal fees. No registration fees. No set-up fees
No rent arrears or debt collection
No Call outs payments to contractors
Full HMO Management
Administration of licenses and certification administered by our team of experts
All our properties are managed by in-house Housing and Maintenance Officers, supported by a team of administrators.
Properties must be vacant.

Our demand is for 1, 2 and 3 bedroom family property and 4+ bedroom HMO’s and at present there is no cap on the number we wish to acquire.

Each property offered to Serco is required to go through a due diligence with the Local Authority (LA) and the Local Police, called a Property Post Code Consultation (PCC). This is to ensure the property is fit for purpose and safe. This process takes between 2 days to 2 weeks.

Once the property is approved by the LA, a Property Negotiator will be assigned as your account manager, who will carry out an initial inspection to scope out the property, a work schedule will be drawn up and a letter of intent shared. Once you have the brought the property to the necessary standard the Property Negotiator will revisit and sign off the property and a Lease will be issued.

I have attached a draft copy of the Lease and the property standards as well as some FAQ’s for your perusal.

The key points of the Lease are below.

CERTIFICATION AND LICENCING
• Certification – Serco to undertake. LL to be recharged
• HMO License – Serco to undertake. LL to be recharged
• Selective Licence – Landlord to undertake and fund

BREAK CLAUSE
· Serco must give 2 months’ notice to LL
· LL must give 6 months’ notice to Serco

LANDLORD OBLIGATIONS – IF REQUESTED TO DO SO
Year 4 of Contractual Term and every 3 years thereafter
Floor covering replacement
Full decoration of the Property
Replacement of inventory (the latter being where applicable) in the fourth year of the Contractual Term and every 3 years thereafter

Year 6 of Contractual Term
New kitchen, new bathroom
Replacement windows
Repair/replacement to boundary markers

Year 7 of the Contractual Term
External decorations including gutters; facias, soffits, rendering and doors

BOILER
· Replacement of the boiler following 2 or more repairs over 3 months or a repair bill of more than £500
· replace the boiler if 3 or more repairs to the boiler over a 6 month period and/or expenditure of £500 or above in a rolling 6 month period.

RENT
To be paid by BACs, 2 months in arrears
INSURANCE
LL to insure, insurance policy to note use for Asylum Seekers.
ASSIGNMENT
Serco is permitted to assign to other group companies and to any company taking over the Compass Contract without further consent of the LL;
NOVATION = ALLOWED TO PASS ON LEASE (SIMILAR TO ASSIGNMENT)

Serco is allowed to transfer the Lease to the Home Office or another company nominated by the Home Office (i.e. if Serco’s contract ends, the Lease will continue and we have the choice to pass it on to the HO/new Provider. This is good for Serco and also for LLs, as the lease (their income will continue)
REPAIR & MAINTENANCE (SCHEDULE 1) – SERCO

Serco takes on the repair and maintenance obligations (non-structural). Structural and Latent defects are the responsibility of the Landlord
SCHEDULE OF CONDITION. A photographic record of the property at the start needs to be attached to the Lease.

DSR


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