The Tory party leadership race is due to finish on 22 July – how will the new Prime Minister transform the landscape for landlords?
Whichever candidate wins the final vote, there are a number of ways the next resident of number 10 might ease the burden on buy-to-let landlords.
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They could overhaul the harsh tax reforms that have already been introduced and block the punitive proposals currently being discussed for the future, such as the banning of section 21 (which prevents evictions at short notice without good reason).
It may seem like a pipe dream, but with a new Prime Minister set to take centre stage, there’s a huge opportunity for change in the buy-to-let sector.
Such change could not only improve the lives of landlords, it could also significantly benefit tenants.
What the Residential Landlords Association wants
The Residential Landlords Association is calling for a raft of changes that will help landlords – and, in turn, tenants.
The Association’s Policy Director, David Smith, explained: “The new Conservative Prime Minister needs to reconsider the approach to the private rented sector. Otherwise the situation for tenants will just get worse as they face less choice and higher rents because of a growing shortage of properties.
“We need a raft of changes that will encourage more investment in high standard homes rather than efforts to scapegoat landlords for failures by successive governments to build enough homes.”
How can the next Prime Minister help landlords?
Here are five ways the next PM can make life easier for landlords, according to the Residential Landlords Association…
1. Pro-growth taxation
This could help keep landlords’ investments profitable and maintain a supply of properties to rent.
2. Repossess properties fairly
While there needs to be a fair system in place to protect tenants from unfair evictions, this needs to be coupled with a dedicated housing court to settle disputes swiftly.
3. Support vulnerable tenants
This can be achieved by ending the local housing allowance cap, which places a limit on the amount that can be claimed for rent.
4. Root out criminal landlords
Councils need to be provided with resources to enforce the current rules and regulations.
5. Reject rent controls
This is because they ‘dry up’ the supply of homes to rent, reducing the choice for tenants and increasing rents, according to the association.
The Residential Landlords Association sent these five measures in a letter to Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson.
In the letter, it claims current policies fail to support landlords and are reducing the supply of homes to rent.
Recent policy changes include a 3 per cent stamp duty surcharge on buy-to-let properties and a reduction in the tax reliefs that landlords can claim.
Read more about 4 new buy-to-let tax rules landlords should know about.