Longer Term Tenancies: A Landlord PerspectiveBy Mark Long
Regarding tenancy agreements (in particular tenancy agreement length), a body supporting landlords believes we are at a point where the government will intervene if the industry does not come up with a solution itself.
The group wants to establish:
- What actually happens when landlords set up a new tenancy – are landlords using a standard tenancy agreement template every time?
- Whether the process has changed over time or if landlords are operating the same way as always.
- If landlords think they need to change their approach
- Awareness and reactions to the concept of longer term tenancies and the conditions which might be needed to make them acceptable
The findings would be used to understand better the landlord perspective as fuel when lobbying.
BDRC ran six focus groups where respondents were private landlords with a mix of portfolio size, length of time active as a landlord, property and tenant type, and usage of letting agents.
For most, the initial tenancy set up process hasn’t changed a great deal over time. However, contracts have become increasingly long. Many landlords are running individual tenancies at below market rent levels to retain good tenants.
Claimed awareness of mandatory longer term tenancies is limited. Some landlords have heard ‘noise’ around the issue from industry sources/political parties. Initial reactions towards the concept were negative.
The research identified three core concerns amongst landlords regarding the introduction of mandatory long term tenancies: ability to evict rogue tenants, reduced flexibility and lack of demand from tenants.
The research enabled the body to understand these core concerns which would need to be alleviated in order for landlords to deem long term tenancies acceptable. It also gave them a deeper understanding of the landlord perspective when presenting the landlord’s voice in lobbying.