By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies to enhance your experience.
Graham Awards


Government accused of "almost destroying traditional lettings market”

One of Britain’s most experienced lettings experts has condemned the government for “almost singlehandedly destroying the traditional lettings market.”

Lisa Simon - now the head of sales and rentals at Carter Jonas but until recently the company’s long-standing head of lettings - says today’s Spring Statement mini-Budget is an opportunity for Chancellor Phillip Hammond to breathe new life into the troubled sector.

“His short-sighted, ‘one size fits all’ lettings legislation, designed to penalise small-scale landlords, has proved devastating to the industry – with the greatest ramifications for tenants - and has served no other purpose than to propel forward institutionally funded Build To Rent schemes” says Simon.


“The introduction of stamp duty penalties applicable to the purchase of secondary residences or buy to let properties, exacerbated by the erosion of tax relief for small scale landlords, has forced many to sell up and vacate the market” she adds. 

Simon says today is an opportunity for the government to reveal revisions to stamp duty, “particularly for the small scale landlords who have kept the lettings sector going for decades but who can no longer afford to remain in the sector.”

She says that while Build To Rent promises to increase stock levels of lettings properties, “the model often fails to build homes where people want to live.” 

Simon concludes: “If the Chancellor will only champion Build To Rent going forward, he must motivate the planning system to allow homes to be built in the right locations. Reforms in this area are compulsory if the Chancellor is committed to shoring up the future of the lettings market – and provide a sufficient volume of homes for Britain’s future population.”

  • icon

    I wouldn't hold your breath waiting for that Lisa

  • icon

    Someone had to say it shame it will fall on the deaf politicians and no one willing to listen


    politicians are just bothered about their vote bank, tenants votes are much more larger than the landlords which they know and announcing much more reliefs to tenants would create more votes


    more over it's discrimination to small investors who had planned their buy to let property would be their pension and to other would be small investors to as well.

  • Simon Shinerock

    Well done Lisa. I’m not trying to in any way diminish the importance of your efforts, however I meticulously spelled out the consequences of this misguided policy several years ago, even spoke about it to Investors, wrote to the government etc. Unfortunately they have cloth ears and are entirely disinterested in logic, common sense or the best interests of anyone other than themselves. Fact the PRS was broken, fact it was mended, fact, it’s being broken again. The worse case would be Corbyn gets in, if that happens, well, it’s an upsetting thought

  • S l
    • S l
    • 13 March 2019 09:35 AM

    perhaps all these views really should be sent to the media eg national newspapers, facebook, twitter etc. Then the tenants will help to rise up against all these steps to oust the prs to make way for the high rise build to rent without garden and lack community sense that the prs provides

    Lenny White

    Hi S l, please note just below the article there are Facebook, Twitter and Linked
    In icons, enabling you to share any story. Go for it, I have :-)

  • icon

    I think we must just accept that BTL is dead, killed off by the very ones who scream for more housing but enact policies to the contrary. Hard to understand really. I have reduced my portfolio down from 9 to currently 2, one is going through sale legals now. I will then have just one. This one has 4 more years on a good fix and has good long term tenants, so will leave this o e till mortgage is up.
    Problem is what do I do at renewal of lease in July, I have just raised rent by inflation up till now but fear may have to raise it double that this year due to changes. What would others do?

  • icon

    Gavin Barlow, when Housing Minister, stated firmly to me at an industry meeting in Taunton that yes he wanted to close down the PRS and replace it with council or big business run built to rent homes on housing estates! that was policy and seems to still be policy.

    S l
    • S l
    • 13 March 2019 12:59 PM

    my guess is gavin barlow had missed the memo where council housing had made losses in rents and cant maintain any profit hence the prs. But then the MPs are having a field day wasting public funding to kill BTL

  • icon
    • 13 March 2019 15:57 PM

    Rather than pussyfoot around why DOESN'T Barlow anounce his stated requirement that he intends to see the destruction of the PRS
    At least then everyone can see what Govt is trying to do.
    Tenants and LL alike can then determine whether such a policy is politically acceptable.
    Very few tenants would accept that destruction of the current PRS would be in their interests.
    But it is useful to know that the cat is out of the bag that the Tories do intend to destroy the PRS.
    They may succeed in getting rid of leveraged LL but they are only 50% of the PRS
    How would Barlow get rid of unencumbered LL!!??
    I'm sure that many leveraged LL could reduce leverage and potentially become unencumbered on a reduced number of rental properties.
    Such reductions in rental property numbers won't be doing tenants any favours!!
    There is simply no way that BTR will ever be in sufficient numbers or in the required locations.
    Of course a classic way to destroy the leveraged PRS is to impose a policy of any BTL mortgage viability is to be based on personal income and not rental income.
    Such personal income would exclude rental income as personal income.
    Such a policy would essentially bring the leveraged PRS to a grinding halt overnight.
    If Barlow has this avowed policy then why hasn't he introduced more anti-PRS policies which will bring about the destruction of the PRS far more quickly that he so obviously desires?

  • PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    Paul, the Govt are Already doing it ! by Taxation, Sec 24, Licensing, enhancing tenants rights to the extent of perverse Fitness For Habitation where tenants can sue you at Tax-payers expense. etc etc.
    The broken courts system, the list goes on. Extra legislation such as Carbon Monoxide, Electric certificates.
    Balanced against almost none of this for the Social Housing sector.


Please login to comment

MovePal MovePal MovePal
sign up