Poll reveals effect of Universal Credit cut on private rental sector
By |Published On: 26th January 2022|

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Poll reveals effect of Universal Credit cut on private rental sector

By |Published On: 26th January 2022|

This article is an external press release originally published on the Landlord News website, which has now been migrated to the Just Landlords blog.

A YouGov poll of private landlords in England and Wales reveals the effects of the decision to cut Universal Credit.

In October last year, the Government cut Universal Credit by £20 a week, following a temporary increase in response to the pandemic.

Following this announcement, a YouGov poll of private landlords across England and Wales took place for the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA).

It reveals almost one in ten private landlords renting to Universal Credit claimants have experienced at least one tenant having difficulties paying their rent due to this benefit cut.

Of those landlords who were either currently letting to a Universal Credit claimant, or who had done so last year, 9% reported having at least one tenant experiencing difficulties because of the cut.

According to official statistics, says the NRLA, of those private rented households in England and Wales receiving support through Universal Credit to pay their rent, 55% had a gap between the support they received and their rent payments.

The NRLA is warning that this will only become worse because of the Government’s decision last year to freeze in cash terms housing cost support. As a result, in the years ahead the level of benefit support available will be able to cover the rent on ever fewer numbers of properties.

The NRLA is calling on the Government to reverse its decision to freeze the Local Housing Allowance rate and ensure it properly reflects market rents.

Ben Beadle, Chief Executive of the NRLA, comments: “Benefit payments are failing to give tenants or landlords confidence that they will be able to cover rents. This basic problem lies at the heart of a broken system in desperate need of reform.

“With households facing a cost-of-living squeeze, it is vital that the benefits system gives the protection that tenants deserve. That is why the Chancellor needs to end the housing benefit freeze as a matter of urgency. Without this many tenants and landlords face an uncertain future about how to keep tenancies going.”

About the Author: Em Morley (she/they)

Em is the Content Marketing Manager for Just Landlords, with over five years of experience writing for insurance and property websites. Together with the knowledge and expertise of the Just Landlords underwriting team, Em aims to provide those in the property industry with helpful resources. When she’s not at her computer researching and writing property and insurance guides, you’ll find her exploring the British countryside, searching for geocaches.

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