ARLA Propertymark has welcomed the creation of a financial lifeline for tenants in Wales in arrears because of Coronavirus.
The association has already called for a similar scheme in the rest of the UK.
Timothy Douglas, ARLA campaigns manager, says: “The launch of this scheme is good news for the sector and will help sustain tenancies and keep the rent flowing across Wales.
“Throughout the pandemic, ARLA Propertymark has highlighted issues affecting letting agents and campaigned for additional support, so it is really positive that the Welsh Government has listened and taken action.
“Agents in Wales should continue to work closely with landlords and tenants and raise awareness of the scheme to ensure that tenants who need help during this challenging time, receive it.”
First of its kind in the UK, the Welsh Government’s Tenancy Saver Loan scheme will be open to private rented sector tenants in rent arrears and those who may also struggle to pay future months’ rent as a result of the virus; it will be open until March 31 2021.
Paid directly to landlords or agents, the scheme will offer one per cent APR loans to be repaid over a period of up to five years and will provide a way to cover rent arrears, or future months’ rent, reducing the risk of eviction and homelessness.
Once a tenant has applied for the loan they will be able to access support and advice services to help them manage their financial situation.
Managed by Wales Council for Voluntary Action, the loans will be provided by seven Credit Unions across Wales.
They will firstly work with tenants to find out whether they’re eligible for the loan scheme and how much they could afford to repay. If the scheme is suitable for the tenant, then the Credit Unions will provide them with support for the duration of the loan repayment term.