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Political Parties Focus On Housing To Win Election

Political Parties Focus On Housing To Win Election

Political Housing Policies Could Have A
Major Impact On Landlords

The May 2015 General Election could have a major impact on the UK’s private rental sector (PRS), with each political party promising something different for the reform of the UK housing market and the private rental sector.

Each political party has their own propaganda to attempt to influence voter sentiment ahead of the May 2015 General Election, but do they really have landlord and tenant interests at heart?

All political campaigning promises something different for home owners and landlords with some political parties focussing on real issues that could make a difference whilst others continue to apportion blame and responsibility on to local authorities and private rented sector landlords.

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Landlords Warned To Get Ready For Universal Credit

Landlords Warned To Get Ready For Universal Credit  Chaos!

National Universal Credit Roll-Out
Starts February 2015 

Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) Secretary, Iain Duncan Smith surprised commentators with an announcement that Universal Credit (UC) will be rolled out to all Jobcentres and local authorities in the UK by February 2015 following the apparent success of the pilot scheme that was originally trialled in the North West.

Many Universal Credit detractors predicted that nothing significant would happen, before next year’s General Election, however, Iain Duncan Smith stunned everyone by announcing that Universal Credit will be rolled out to all Jobcentres and local authorities across the country, starting February 2015.

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MP's Want Rogue Landlords Banned

MP’s Want Rogue Landlords Banned

New Report Calls For
National Ban On Rogue Landlords

A new parliamentary report entitled “Creating A Better Private Rented Sector” was published by MP’s from the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Friday 27th June 2014, in order to tackle the apparent problems faced by both landlords and tenants in the UK’s private rented sector (PRS).

The report suggests a full review of the PRS regulatory system to check that it is fit for purpose and the report makes the following recommendations:

 

  • Nationwide banning orders for rogue landlords
  • National licence for landlords
  • Guide for tenants on renting a property

The report has been welcomed by UK landlord associations including the Residential Landlords Association (RLA), who say that the new report “highlights the need for better enforcement by local authorities of the wide range of powers they already have to enforce standards.”

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Manchester Leads UK Property Boom

Manchester Leads UK Property Boom

Manchester Leads UK Property Boom

Increasing property prices are not just a phenomenon belonging to London and the South-East of England, as new data from Nationwide shows that all UK regions are now enjoying increasing property prices as the property boom continues to gather pace.

Every region across the UK saw property prices increase year-on-year, ranging from a 14.9% annual increase in London to a 1.9% uplift in the North.

Nationwide reported that property values increased by an average of 8.4% across the whole of the UK in 2013, as the market revival became increasingly broad-based, but Manchester emerged as the property boom city, with property prices up by 21% over the last year, to reach an average value of £209,627 (GBP).

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What Lord Freud Had Say To The RLA

What Lord Freud Had Say To The RLA

Welfare Reform Minister Speaks Out On Universal Credit

Controversial welfare reform minister Lord Freud has spoken exclusively to Residential Property Investor magazine, published by the Residential Landlords Association.

Universal Credit was originally intended to be a fundamental reordering of the UK’s welfare and state benefit system, however when policy guidelines were announced, the reforms dealt private rental sector landlords a cruel blow, as it was decreed that landlords with tenants claiming local housing allowance (LHA) would no longer receive direct payments, even if they believed that the tenant was in an extremely vulnerable position.

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More Red Tape For LandlordsRed Tape Increases For Private Sector Landlords
Despite Government Promises

Despite numerous promises to reduce the amount of red tape property professionals had to deal with, there are now even more legal requirements to let and manage rental properties.

The coalition Government started an initiative called the Red Tape Challenge, aiming to reduce the time and associated financial costs incurred by businesses and consumers in complying with unnecessary legislation.

However, recent Government announcements will increase the amount of red tape and infuriating processes that landlords and letting agents have to deal with

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) say there are currently over 100 national regulations governing the letting of a rental property in the private rental sector.

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Even MP's Think Landlord Immigration Checks Are Unworkable

Even MP’s Think Landlord Immigration Checks Are Unworkable

MP’s Question Immigration Checks By Landlords

The Governments plan to make private rented sector (PRS) and social housing landlords legally responsible for checking the immigration status of all tenant applicants has raised questions on the policy from MP’s.

The proposal to make landlords perform immigration checks on tenants and prosecute those who fail to comply has caused outrage among UK PRS landlords, who would be expected to be doing the UK Border Agency’s work without payment.

Following the outline of the new proposals, Shadow Home Secretary, Yvette Cooper, a former housing minister, told the House of Commons during a lively debate on the Queens speech that landlords performing immigration checks on tenants would be unworkable, stating that: “The Government cannot tell us how their policy will be enforced, because they do not know who the landlords are and they will not have a statutory register.”

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Controvesial Universal Credit Needs

To Be Given A Chance Landlords Told

Landlords Urged To Give Universal Credit A Chance

Landlords Urged To Give Universal Credit A Chance

Few systems have caused as much controversy before even being launched as the government’s universal credit. It draws together all welfare claims into a single monthly payment, like a salary, so will undoubtedly change the financial landscape for landlords and tenants – yet it has the potential to improve the claims process for all involved.

One of the big benefits of the system – if implemented correctly – is that claims will be processed online and in real time.

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More and more young adults are still living with their parents, unable to afford to rent or buy property of their own according to the Office for National Statistics.

Last year, the ONS say nearly three million adults aged from 20-34 were living with their parents, an increase of 20%, since 1997, that’s an increase of almost half a million people!

The rise comes despite the fact that the number of people within this age group has barely changed.

Altogether, 64% of men, almost two in three, aged between 20-34,  now lives with his parents, and so do 46% or nearly half of all women in the same age bracket

However, by age 34 there is a rapid change of circumstances, with only 7% of men and 2% of women still living with their parents.

David Orr, National Housing Federation chief executive, blamed the rise on the lack of affordable homes, saying: “The options are severely limited and out of reach for many young people. Much more needs to be done to tackle this country’s dire housing crisis.”

The average age of the UK first-time buyer is now 30, according to research from Clydesdale and Yorkshire banks, but varies considerably across the UK: for example, 28 in Yorkshire, but 36 in Wales and 33 in London.

According to LSL’s latest index, the average monthly rent across England and Wales is now £709 – 2.4% higher than in 2011.

Research from the National Landlords Association (NLA) has shown that almost three-quarters of landlords agree that the buy-to-let market needs greater innovation, while an overwhelming proportion (89%) also believe it would benefit from more lenders or greater competition.

However, although many landlords were dissatisfied with the current range of buy-to-let products on the market, the research found that property acquisition is in fact on the rise with one-in-ten landlords having added properties to their portfolios over the last three months and one-in-five expecting to do so in the next year.

Furthermore, more than half of landlords surveyed do not believe that access to buy-to-let mortgages is getting any easier, with three-in-five agreeing that their individual circumstances as landlords are not being considered by buy-to-let lenders.

David Salusbury, NLA Chairman explained.”Early signs of increasing property acquisition suggest that landlords are feeling more confident about future prospects of the buy-to-let market. However, while these findings are encouraging, some professional landlords, with more extensive portfolios, seem to be struggling to secure funds for additional expansion. The private-rented sector is playing an increasingly important role in the provision of housing. Buy-to-let products must be sustainable, with consideration for the longer term, if the private-rented sector is to rise to this challenge.”

The NLA Landlord Optimism Index has also levelled out after a period of slow improvement following a significant drop four years ago, suggesting that landlords are a little more cautious about their future prospects.

Other findings from the NLA research show that seven-in-ten landlords (72%) carry borrowing on all or some of their letting portfolio, landlords have an average of about eight (7.7) buy-to-let loans held per portfolio and 20% of landlords took out a new loan or re-mortgaged in the last year.

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