Tenants Left High And Dry As Landlords Scarper From Troubled Market

Renters left in fear from homelessness as landlords leave the rental market

Housing charity Threshold answered a call on average every twenty minutes from worried renters facing eviction between January and September this year.

Their latest report shows how an average of 472 private renters a month, who were facing eviction, sought assistance in the first nine months of the year.

Between July and September, Threshold supported a total of 8,835 households and prevented 1,121 households from entering homelessness, including 1,758 adults and 1,185 children.

Advisors answered over 12,000 calls and responded to over 2,500 webchats on behalf of private renters regarding tenancy issues.

In this period, 1,384 private renters sought Threshold’s help when they received a notice of termination from their landlord, with 60% of notices issued because the landlord intended to sell the property. Threshold advisors identified that 46% of notices were invalid.

Speaking to the findings of the latest report and the recent ban on evictions, Threshold CEO John-Mark McCafferty stated:

In the first nine months of the year, over 50% of queries received by Threshold concerned security of tenure and tenancy termination. This level of queries surpassed the number received on the same issue for the entirety of 2021 and was over double the number received in 2020. We are continuing to see a large exodus of landlords from the private rental sector, resulting in fewer properties available to rent and fewer housing alternatives for households who are facing eviction. Given the increasingly dire situation, it was necessary for the Government to introduce a ban on evictions to allow for short- and medium–term solutions to be implemented to combat the growing rental crisis.”

Threshold has previously called on the Government to implement a number of measures to alleviate pressures facing private tenants and landlords, such as:

  1. A reduction to the Capital Gains Tax (CGT) payable when a landlord sells a rental home with the tenant in situ, to a Local Authority or Approved Housing Body.
  2. A reduction on the rate of tax on rental incomes from properties subject to long-term lease agreements (at a minimum of 10 years) to increase security of tenure, with leases only terminable if there is wrongdoing by the tenant.
  3. An increase in schemes and targets to return vacant homes for use in the rental sector and necessary measures to return properties from the short-term rental sector to the long-term rental sector.

John-Mark McCafferty continued: “It is absolutely vital that the Government uses the time of this eviction ban to develop and implement measures to not only slow the rate of evictions being served to private renters, but also to increase the availability of affordable and secure homes. Failure to establish such measures will result in no improved outlook for private renters at the end of the eviction ban in Spring 2023.”