LHA Crisis Deepens as More Landlords Refuse Benefit Tenants

18 January 2012 Categories: News

LHA Crisis Deepens as More Landlords Refuse Benefit Tenants

A recent survey of 1000 private rental sector landlords conducted by the house share specialist Spareroom has provided a number of startling statistics, not least of which is that over half of the participants (51%) admitted to having experienced problems with tenants since the major LHA changes were introduced in 2008. The changes in question meant that LHA payments were paid directly to the tenant and not to the landlord; a change that 86% of landlords disagree with.

Matt Hutchinson, director of Spareroom, said: “It’s clear from this survey that a shake-up of the current system of paying housing benefit to the tenant is desperately needed, and reverting back to the old structure, where landlords could receive rental payments directly from the council would be a step in the right direction.”

Nearly 9 out of 10 landlords interviewed (87%) said they had experienced late rent payments, complete non-payment and issues regarding payment suspension with their LHA tenants, and a further 11% said their LHA tenants had stopped paying rent altogether so forcing an eviction.

Although 34% of the survey participants do currently have LHA tenants in their properties a staggering 60% now specify no LHA benefit claimants in their adverts…and the problem is set to worsen as the new LHA benefit shake-ups take effect.