A Bleak Winter for Renters

A Bleak Winter for Renters

At Court Enforcement Specialists, we understand the difficult position that many people find themselves in, as we move into a what could be a bleak start to 2024 for some…

Individuals and families from all walks of life are finding things difficult right now, but perhaps none more so than renters who rely on benefits for their income. A recent report by Shelter revealed that as many as one in six renters on benefits are at risk of eviction, with over half the total number, a staggering 55%, fearing they could lose their homes in the near future due to rising costs.

As far as Shelter see things, this is largely down to the Government’s reluctance to unfreeze Housing Benefit immediately, as opposed to in around four months’ time as planned. Section 21 Evictions, or ‘no fault’ evictions are still allowed to take place as it stands, with the Renters Reform Bill still held up in Parliament, another thing which Shelter says is at the heart of the current problem.

At CES, we empathise with the individuals and families who are struggling to keep up with their rent payments and facing the frightening possibility of losing their homes. We recognise that there are real financial challenges for many individuals who rely on benefits to make ends meet, and know that a number of recent issues have put a strain on the financial stability of renters, making it harder for them to meet their rental obligations in the short, medium and longer terms.

Court Enforcement Specialists approach all situations like this with empathy and understanding, recognising the hardships that tenants may be facing, whilst at the same time, keeping in mind the difficulties that landlords are experiencing in this situation too.

Landlords who rely on rental income to pay their mortgages and cover property maintenance costs are also facing challenges.

Now, we understand that there will be people out there who say…

“Boo Hoo, Poor Landlords…”

…but we see things from both sides, and have conversations with landlords all the time about how their own rising costs are making it unsustainable for them to provide affordable rental accommodation.

The increasing number of renters on benefits who are struggling to make payments puts landlords in a financially precarious position. They still have mortgage commitments, property taxes and other expenses to cover. The shortfall from rental income can have a significant impact on their financial stability.

Many landlords have seen their mortgage payments increase significantly over the last year or two, some more than double, due to rising interest rates and the Cost of Living Crisis. This has put additional pressure on them to ensure that rental income is consistent and covers their financial obligations. Think about it, as well as providing an affordable home for renters, it has to ‘make sense’ for a landlord to provide accommodation, and it certainly shouldn’t cost them money.

At Court Enforcement Specialists, we understand the importance of protecting the rights of landlords and helping them navigate the legal process to address rental arrears and potential evictions in a fair and respectful manner.

It is crucial to approach these situations with a balanced perspective, taking into account the challenges faced by both renters and landlords. We aim to facilitate constructive communication between landlords and tenants at the earliest possible opportunity, as we know that seeking fair and sustainable solutions for both parties is the best way forward.

This can involve exploring alternative payment arrangements, accessing and signposting to support services for tenants, or even negotiating temporary rent reductions to provide relief for struggling renters, whilst also addressing the financial concerns of landlords.

There are solutions to every problem, but burying your head is a guaranteed way to ensure you won’t find them.

We are committed to working with compassion and professionalism to support all parties involved in these challenging situations. By maintaining open lines of communication and offering guidance on potential options for resolution, we hope to minimise the impact of rental arrears and evictions on both renters and landlords.

In situations where eviction becomes a last resort, which is unfortunately inevitable, we aim to facilitate a process that is conducted with sensitivity and respect for the individuals involved, including the provision of clear information about their legal rights and responsibilities, as well as signposting to support services for renters who may be experiencing financial hardship or real vulnerability.

It is vital to recognise that the issues surrounding rental arrears and evictions are complex and multi-faceted, it is rarely as simple as the big bad landlord kicking someone out.

Wherever each case is up to, we encourage empathy and collaboration, aiming to support all parties in navigating these difficult situations and working towards positive outcomes that prioritise stability and above all, fairness, for both renters and landlords.

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