Debate Magazine

Fun in The Sun

Posted on the 05 August 2019 by Markwadsworth @Mark_Wadsworth

From The Sun:
Tenants suffer as rent prices soar following ban on fees
MORE tenants than ever before have been hit with rent rises following a ban on fees, claims new research. The number of letting agents who saw renters suffering increases rose to the highest figure on record last month at 55 per cent, up from 45 per cent in May.

Fun in The Sun
So far, so rehash of ARLA press release. To my relief, the article pounces on the obvious weakness with the figures:
ARLA Propertymark didn't share how much it's seen rents increase by when contacted by The Sun. The figures should also be taken with a pinch of salt as they're based on a survey of 272 members out of a total of 9,500.
The article then continues to take apart the ARLA propaganda...
Independent property expert Henry Pryor told The Sun: "I simply don’t believe that rents are rising and where they are that it is down to the tenant fees ban.
"Landlord groups have cried wolf over tax changes, stamp duty changes, the banning of the high dubious practice of stuffing tenants for costs that the landlord should be paying and yet rents have risen at most by inflation.
"Whilst of course there will have been some increase in rents, this will have been offset for tenants by the reduction in the fees being forced upon them."
Georgie Laming, campaigns manager at Generation Rent, also said it hasn't had tenants saying that rents have gone up.
She said: "Some landlords might try to increase rent to cover loss of earnings from the tenant fees ban but this is much preferable to large upfront costs that put lots of families into debt at the start of a tenancy.
"Whilst landlords may now claim that rents are rising because it's now cheaper to move, tenants have more clout to negotiate with their landlord over things like repairs that need doing or rent increases. It's important to remember that rents can only rise to an amount that tenants can afford - so landlords raising their rents will find it harder to let in the long run."

The article then concludes with this:
Rents could rocket by 15 per cent over next five years as the number of properties "dries up", an industry expert warned a year ago. Yet the cost of renting fell for the first time in over a decade earlier this year.

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