Now that schools have closed to all but the children of keyworkers – along with public places like pubs, cafes, restaurants, leisure centres, cinemas, theatres and many shops – the country is in a state of crisis due to the spread of COVID-19. Does the government have any plans to help landlords during this critical time?
So far, the UK government have indicated that they expect tenants and landlords to collaborate in a an effort to establish a repayment plan that is affordable once the crisis has passed.
Emergency legislation is due to be drawn up, and the aim is to put a stop to new evictions from rented accommodation for as long as the coronavirus crisis lasts. This means landlords cannot begin new eviction proceedings for at least three months.
The government have also now stated that the recently announced mortgage holiday will also apply to landlords, if their tenants are having trouble paying their rent due to COVID-19.
The aim of this policy is to alleviate the worries of those landlords who are concerned about paying a buy-to-let mortgage. As a result, it is expected that no unnecessary pressure be put on tenants to pay their rent.
After the crisis period has passed, the government expects both parties to work together in establishing an affordable repayment plan, taking tenants’ circumstances into account.
Robert Jenrick, the Housing Secretary, described these as “extraordinary times” and said that nobody renting would be evicted from their home due to COVID-19 hardship, nor would unmanageable debts be passed on to landlords.