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I thought I would set up a community brainstorming session.If we were allowed to set a housing policy and you were sitting in front of the next Prime Minister, what would you put forward to improve the PRS?
Be Housing Minister for the day!
Learn Change and Adapt ?????
All comments are for casual information purposes only. If you wish to rely on any advice I have given please ensure you obtain independent specialist advice from a third party. No liability is accepted for comments made.
1) leave the decent side of the prs alone, theres plenty to keep it in check and provide good safe accomodation.
2) bring in legislation that incentivises councils to identify and prosecute the rogue element, make it a statutory duty, all costs recoverable from the property owner /landlord plus fines. In this would be legislation that gives an ability to deal with freeholders that do not maintain exteriors and common areas, first leaseholders would be given the opportumity to do it themselves properly if they don’t councils step in take over the freehold and charge leaseholders.
3) get on with the real task which is building more houses and an economy that creates sufficient wealth for people to buy/ rent them.
Let me kick this off ...
I would like to see:Personal BTL as Self Employment or a Company structure
All Landlords to have a Licence and CRB accredited and some mandatory training
I would like to see a "Star System" to rate housing offered - higher the start the higher the rent
I think a Housing Court away from the County Courts
A new form of AST one that could offer short term lets ie HMO and another one for Family Lets with longer Tenancy with a built in inflation calculation
I would like to see fair Tenant fees and fair deposits
A "minimum standard" inspection on all rented property but this would be undertaken by Estate Agents before a property is let
(We could learn a lot from Holiday Homes which have a rating system which works well).
A register for all property which is rented (not Public ).
1. Extend the rent a room scheme to all landlords.
2, Require lenders to lend against the asset, not the type of letting.
3. Remove the default AST and allow landlords and tenants to jointly agree alternative terms on a tenancy if desired.
Lenders are just like us
They will lend to what they think is safe
I dont think the Housing Minister can change lending criteria
Maybe not the Housing Minister, but the government created the PRA in 2013, and that changed lending criteria.
PRA is to stop over borrowing Gary
The asset is the lenders choice of asset some will lend on a prefab some wont
Its just like you selecting the tenant you want to do business with
I don't wish to go off on a tangent, but I'll try to explain my issue. I'm planning to spend around £30k refurbishing my first investment property to use it for lodgings. If I borrow this money I have 3 options. Looking at my bank, Natwest, for a comparison: BTL mortgage 4.74% SVR, residential mortgage 4.24% SVR, unsecured loan 3.99% fixed for term.
Both the mortgage options offer the advantage of a reduced fixed rate for 2 or 5 years, but both will restrict how I use the property for income, limiting the option for lodgings. The lender has the security of a property against the loan but still restricts how I use the borrowed funds.
With the unsecured loan I have the freedom to let the property how I wish to maximise income and the lender has no security, only my credit history. Although I don't get the initial discounted rate of a mortgage I get a favourable rate for a fixed term. Overall, this option is more profitable, but limits my borrowing.
The Govt however can as they did with the banks regulatory capital as part of the financial reform.
what about the recent non-discrimination saga of DSS - mortgage lenders are now starting to amend their T&Cs to conform.
Lenders need to take account of how the mortgage payments will be afforded which will be determined by the type of let and rent level.
1 - Abolish the English Selective Licensing System entirely, and adopt the Scottish system lock, stock and barrel with a few loopholes sorted - as all the English Policymakers seem to be fopdoodles. I make the cost of SL at several hundred million a year or more; get all those admin staff doing something useful.
2 - Encourage small shared houses as a solution to ease Housing Demand. See Friends (and what happened in Oxford).
3 - Address that HHSRS is massively complicated and horribly out of date for properly Energy Efficient homes, which work better as a heating single zone.
4 - Seriously incentivise Energy Efficiency. eg Stamp Duty -1% for C or better (including a 1% payment if on zero rate); +1% for D or less. Consider differential council tax.
5 - Reform Stamp Duty at the higher end.
6 - Address the owner occupied sector wrt Energy Efficiency.