The Welsh government’s decision to force landlords to give tenants six months’ notice when repossessing their homes has not been well received by buy-to-let investors and letting agents.
The National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) fears that the new rules could have “devastating consequences” on private landlords in Wales.
The changes have been introduced with immediate effect and were implemented in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
There are concerns that BTL landlords will not be able to cope financially without rent payments for such a long period of time.
Consequently, the NRLA is calling on the Welsh government to provide loans to cover tenants’ rents that are paid directly to landlords.
Ben Beadle, chief executive of the NRLA, commented: “The news that the notice period will be increased from three to six months will come as a real hammer blow to landlords in Wales.
“Some may already have tenants who were building up arrears prior to COVID-19, now not only have they been hit by the five month moratorium on repossessions but they will have to give a further six months’ notice.
“Even after this, it is unlikely the courts will be able to hear these cases straight away, so landlords could quite easily be looking at 18 months with no income.
“Effectively depriving a landlord of their right to evict as we come out of lockdown is unacceptable. The Welsh government must act swiftly to address this, by offering interest free loans to tenants to cover unpaid rent and remove any risk of eviction. Where tenants refuse to apply for loans but continue to build arrears, landlords will need greater assistance.”