Prospective tenant numbers continue to rise in February

With the number of prospective tenants continuing to rise nationally, there are more calls for tenants in trouble with arrears to secure a government support package.

For the second month in a row, the number of new prospective tenants rose and half of agents saw landlords increasing rent in February.

Propertymark Chief Policy Advisor Mark Hayward, said: “ Our latest figures clearly show that the rental market isn’t indicating any signs of slowing down as demand for rental properties surged last month.

“Letting agents are continuing to support landlords and their tenants during these ongoing difficult times and it is imperative that tenancies are maintained to keep the rent flowing.”

According to Citizens Advice, 500,000 renters in the UK are in arrears with debts estimated at £300 million.

And Mark cautioned: “Now we have a route out of the current lockdown, it is vital that continuity in the private rental sector is maintained to continue to help the nation’s economic recovery from the pandemic.

“To do this, the government must consider introducing a financial support package for those tenants who have built up arrears due to the financial impact of Covid-19,” said Mark.

Chinneck Shaw Property Manager, Joe Rocks, commented: “Our tenant selection process means that the vast majority of our tenants have continued to pay their rent as usual through the pandemic. 

“In the few cases where they haven’t been able to pay their rent, we have worked hard with tenants and clients alike to aim for a sensible repayment plan. As far as the national picture is concerned, the figures for arrears are worrying and this will be a situation we will continue to monitor.”