The government’s private rental sector (PRS) reform plans will negatively impact multi-use homes (HMOs) and the investment and supply of these properties.
According to real estate investment franchise Platinum Property Partners, the proposed Renters Reform Bill does not specifically exclude professional or student HMOs, just as it excludes purpose-built student housing.
The company suggested that implementation of the proposed guidelines would have “adverse effects” on shared households.
In a blog, Platinum Property Partners said it welcomes ideas to make the PRS fairer, but eliminating Section 21 no-fault evictions, banning short-term leases, and allowing renters to request a pet are doing in HMOs with three or more no sense People rent individual rooms and share common areas.
It said removing Section 21 would “cause tenant stress and discomfort” when a person’s behavior is not technically antisocial but intimidates or offends other members of the household.
The blog said: “For example, there was a case where a male tenant made unwanted advances to a female tenant. She was scared and told him to stop, but he insisted and stole her underwear from the clothesline. Among the proposed changes, even if there are grounds for a fault-based eviction, there are two main problems.
“First, the offended tenant must testify against the perpetrator in court, and second, they must continue to live under the same roof as the perpetrator, perhaps for six to 12 months while the case is pending.”
real estate investment
Platinum Property Partners said the introduction of periodic leases, or rolling contracts, would remove the security of mid- to long-term revenue for all landlords. However, this could be particularly detrimental to HMOs as it could discourage landlords from accommodating tenant requests.
It said HMO landlords may not be willing to invest in accommodating specific requests just for a tenant to move out without notice.
The blog also said there was “no way” HMO landlords could “reasonably consent” to pets as it would reduce their appeal to potential renters, especially if they have phobias or allergies.
It was also unfair to the animal, it said.
Platinum Property Partners said the proposed policy for landlords to require renters to purchase pet insurance would cover the animal’s health but might not cover damage caused by the pet.
“It is not feasible for HMO landlords to review every insurance policy per renter and then assume in good faith that they will recover costs that would be paid directly to the policyholder,” she added.
The blog concluded: “Parliamentarians should recognize that HMOs are different from single-family homes and that granting rights to a tenant and taking away a valuable managerial tool from landlords is not without risk.
“The interests of other housemates should be balanced. Otherwise the strong will suppress the weak in tricky situations and the landlords will be almost powerless.”
Shekina is the commercial editor at Mortgage Solutions. She has over four years of experience in the B2B publishing market, having previously worked in industries such as accounting, pet, funeral, hospitality, retail and jewelry. She currently covers current events in the mortgage market and works with financial clients to produce sponsored content. Follow her on Twitter at @ShekinaMS