LETTING & ESTATE AGENT

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Residential lettings for benefits claimants 'declining'

Residential lettings for benefits claimants 'declining'

More than half of private landlords intend to no longer list property for tenants receiving housing benefits, figures suggest.

A survey conducted by the National Landlords Association (NLA) revealed that 58 per cent planned to cut the number of properties they let out to benefits claimants.

Nine out of ten said they would implement this in the next 18 months, while one-third revealed they would do so with immediate effect.

David Salusbury, chairman of the NLA, said: "These findings by the National Landlords Association are concerning as they indicate that cuts to LHA benefits are forcing landlords out of this part of the rental market."

The report also showed that more than eight in ten landlords are concerned about the reduction of LHA rentals from average market rates to the lowest 30 per cent.

Ninety per cent of landlords said that they could not afford to absorb the changes to the LHA rate as the majority of them are faced with mortgage repayments and running costs.

Mr Salusbury said: "The NLA believes there is a risk that the government's policies will result in fewer affordable rental properties available to vulnerable families across the UK, especially as the number of people claiming benefits continues to rise.

"Benefit payments must ensure that LHA tenants are not left at risk and that landlords providing this much-needed housing can cover their costs."