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Build To Rent developers say they want three-year tenancies as the norm

The British Property Federation says it is doing all it can to urge the fledgling Build To Rent sector to fall in line with the government’s enthusiasm for longer-term tenancies.

The federation has secured the agreement of 20 of the sector's most active investors and developers to offer three year tenancies as the norm in Build To Rent schemes.

In the Housing White Paper released in February, outgoing housing minister Gavin Barwell asked the BTR sector to offer family-friendly tenancies, typically for three years, for those who want longer-term stability when renting.

“One of the benefits of the UK's new build to rent sector is its ability to offer longer tenancies to its customers” says a pledge produced by the BPF. 

“We, the undersigned, therefore pledge to offer our customers the option of a three-year tenancy in any of our new build to rent buildings. Our customers will not be under any compulsion to take up this three-year tenancy option, and can still opt for shorter terms. 

“To further assist customers with their budgeting, we pledge to review rents no more frequently than once a year or at the end of the initial term, and to set out clearly at the start of the tenancy the basis on which rents will be reviewed. Such tenancies will allow the tenant to break, after a short period of notice.”

Ian Fletcher, the BPF’s director of real estate policy, says the BTR sector has long supported the government’s ambition for longer term tenancies.

“While many BTR providers already offer longer tenancies, our aim is that three-year tenancies become a trademark of the sector” he says.

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    Just remember that a 3-year tenancy works two ways…I foresee tenants crying foul when they are locked in to, say, a further 28 months of rental payments despite circumstances (e.g. life, employment etc.) requiring they move elsewhere.

    Some tenants are forced to rent: the vast majority choose to be flexibly 'mobile'.

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