The demand for private rented accommodation is high as is the supply. There are simply thousands more properties available to rent at this current time than ever before as more and more investors are choosing to put their monies into Buy to lets (BTL).
So can you find the property that you want?
Speaking to a number of tenants over the last few months highlights the increasing divide in tenants and rental accommodation. Most effected are:
- Young Tenants (under 25)
- Tenants on Low Income
- LHA Tenants
- Tenants with bad credit history
- Tenants with children
- Tenants with pets
It is a hard situation for all young people to face. Even though they are in full time employment they are still struggling to raise deposits as well as pay rent and living costs. The cost of moving into rented accommodation can be equal to or in a lot of cases more than a months salary.
Increasing rental prices, higher deposits, letting reference and application fees, it is no wonder that many people are searching for ways to reduce the costs of moving.
Amanda Whaley from Private Landlord Directory says: ” it was important to me that when tenants view the properties listed on the website that they get the full picture of costs involved. They can see the rent, deposit and reference/application fees involved and if the landlord accepts LHA, so they can quickly work out if that property is within their budget.”
“As they can connect and deal direct with the private landlords, they can negotiate, discuss terms and also discuss other obstacles that they are trying to overcome such as pets, bad credit history and even making changes to property to allow for disabilities”
“What many tenants seem to forget is that private landlords are ‘real people’ and whilst their aim is to protect their investment they have the power and ability to allow for change and to assess the tenants for themselves. Even though they have an agenda and a checklist they have more flexibility to adapt”.
Amanda goes on to say: ” As a private landlord I do treat everyone as an individual with different circumstances and really do follow my gut instinct . I am flexible to a point, if I feel that the tenant will be a long term tenant who will look after the property then I will give them more leeway. At the end of the day, I want my properties to be looked after and making me money as they are my investment, so I need to choose wisely who I rent them to.”
In summary. When you are looking for a rented property, it is better to be honest and open with the landlord. Ask straight questions without being aggressive and explain the reason why you are asking the question.
Honesty is always the best policy when dealing with Landlords.
A new scheme which increases a tenants’ credit rating if they keep up to date on their rent is being introduced by credit referencing company EXPERIAN.
The scheme known as the Rental Exchange could help to strengthen a tenants’ credit history in the same way that a good payment record to a mortgage company helps a homeowner gain credit.
This seems to be a positive development as it gives tenants an incentive to pay their rent on time and gain a higher credit score which will help them in the future to obtain credit including a mortgage.
Currently the Rental Exchange will only operate with a number of the larger corporate private landlords but if it could be widened to small private landlords it would be an excellent way of encouraging tenants to be prompt with their rental payments and bring down rental arrears. The scheme allows landlords registered for the initiative to share information on a secure website and could help tenants get better access to mainstream low-cost credit. The information will be held by Experian’s secure database for up to 36 months, being accessed by other landlords and credit providers only when requested with the express consent of the tenant.
Paul Vescovi, UK & Ireland managing director of Experian Credit Services, said: “With several million people currently living in privately rented accommodation, a significant percentage of the population could be missing out on mainstream, low-cost credit because lenders do not have a comprehensive picture of their financial track record.
“The Rental Exchange will strengthen people’s credit histories, helping them to access a wider range of credit deals.”
As renting is increasingly becoming a lifestyle choice for many Britons, it is important that the process for credit scoring accurately reflects a tenant’s status and rent payment history to enable them to have fair access to affordable credit and services.
If a tenant has a good credit history they are more likely to be successful in renting from a private landlord. If they are given an incentive to pay their rent on time, it is not only going to benefit them in the long term, but also the landlord who is able to rest easy that he has someone who is financially able to meet the rent each month.
Private Landlord Directory we are able to offer Experian Credit Checks for just £8 (+vat) with a guarantee 24 hour turnaround. We are authorised brokers of Experian, one of the UK’s leading credit referencing agency.