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would you now rent to a housing benefit applicant?

(197 Posts)
WhyMeWhyNot Fri 29-Oct-10 14:58:19

So all you Mumsnetter landlords --- in all honesty will you still or would you in future rent your property to a housing benefit claimant? Either one who works and has their rent topped up or a family on 100% benefit?

JarethTheGoblinKing Fri 29-Oct-10 14:59:16


(I'm not actually a landlord btw, but I would have no problem with it at all)

pookamoo Fri 29-Oct-10 14:59:55

Personally I would be happy to do so, but my mortgage lender specifies that I am not allowed to. sad

FreeButtonBee Fri 29-Oct-10 15:00:46

1. My mortgage company may not allow it

2. My insurance company may not allow it

Unfortunately it's often not down to the landlord

Hullygully Fri 29-Oct-10 15:01:21

Couldn't afford to. Capped amount is much less than market rent.

azazello Fri 29-Oct-10 15:11:30

Yes absolutely if I had a property to rent and the mortgage co allowed it. When we did rent out our flat the mortgage co wouldn't let us rent it other than on a shorthold tenancy and not to HB claimants/students etc.

That was on a 30%LTV mortgage btw so mortgage companies just have standard clauses you have to comply with.

WhyMeWhyNot Fri 29-Oct-10 15:13:45

So do you think current tenants will be asked to vacate when their tenancies are up in order for non claimants to be housed?
Or will they sell and give up on renting property.
If so these people will indeed fill up all the B and B's.
Or will landlords lower rent prices, can't see that happening myself .....

Frrrrightattendant Fri 29-Oct-10 15:13:57

most insurance and mortgage companies disallow it.

This combined with the low capping in most areas ALREADY is why it's usually only possible to rent an absolute shit hole OR from an unscrupulous landlord - or from someone extremely kind and generous, on the other hand, who likes you enough not to care about the money.

These are harder to find...

QueenOfFlamingEverything Fri 29-Oct-10 15:20:16

I would, in fact I do.

Well, sort of.

I'm a member of a housing co-operative, and as such I am both landlord and tenant of the property the co-operative owns. Some of the people living here claim housing benefit - some partial as they are also working, and some full as they are unable to work.

huddspur Fri 29-Oct-10 15:20:26

If the mortgage and insurance companys allowed it then I might or though if I had to choose between a HB applicant and a person who was paying the rent out of their income then I'd pick the person who was paying out of their own pocket.

HappyMummyOfOne Fri 29-Oct-10 15:20:27

Not a landlord but no I wouldnt. More wear and tear on a house when someone is home all day and night, delays in rent whilst HB is processed or checked at random times and more chances of non payment.

Frrrrightattendant Fri 29-Oct-10 15:21:36

Who says we are at home all day? hmm

and who says non payment is more likely? You're talking from sheer prejudice.

Frrrrightattendant Fri 29-Oct-10 15:22:43

With what justification Huddspur? Or simply on moral grounds?

huddspur Fri 29-Oct-10 15:26:30

Serveral reasons frrrr, one would be I'm not sure how the housing benefits reforms will work and wouldn't want to risk non-payments due to glitches in the new reformed system.
Secondly and most importantly is that insurance and mortgage companys must have a reason for excluding HB recipients, their must be a higher risk of non-payment or damage to the property for them to do this. So if I had the choice of 2 people I would alsways pick the person who comes with the least risk iysim.

HappyMummyOfOne Fri 29-Oct-10 15:30:06

Fright, how would someone on full HB and not working pay the rent until HB kicks in or if its stopped for a check/fraud report etc? Therefore chances of non payment are higher if on benefit rather than a salary.

expatinscotland Fri 29-Oct-10 15:31:37

Another thing that puts off many private landlords is that, if the tenant has been found to have been overpaid or fraudulently claimed HB, the council can pursue the landlord for the money, even though he/she may never have received it if the tenant was paid directly and/or if the tenant has long since scarpered.

That would fill me with dread, tbh, because I know from personal experience with HB they often come back years later with an overpayment demand.

Frrrrightattendant Fri 29-Oct-10 15:33:59

I had no problems paying on time - I borrowed a month's rent from my folks, but the HB was sorted within two weeks. It goes into the bank, I set up a standing order - it's never, ever been an issue and it is always paid on time.

Hudd I'm not sure I buy the insurance companies' protocols! They probably put it in because in the old days HB was always delayed etc. the system is far better now. You do need to meet your tenant and know you can trust them though.

I guess I come across as pretty responsible.

MrsGhoulOfGhostbourne Fri 29-Oct-10 15:35:00

No - because in cases where the HB claimant claims too much either mistakenly or fraudulently it is clawed back from the landlord, not the tenant, even tho' the landlord is entirely inoocent of misdemeanour. Landlord has no way of knowign if teh tenant has claimed correctly, or if theri circumstances hadve changed but they have 'forgotten' to inform the LA.
Many be more inclined to if
- it was paid directly to the landlord, not via the tenant and
- if there was a guarantee the landlord would not be pursued for back rent paid or claimed in error.

huddspur Fri 29-Oct-10 15:38:57

Frrrr I just think there is a greater chance of something happening when its a HB claimant so if you don't have to take the risk then why would you?

Frrrrightattendant Fri 29-Oct-10 15:40:34

I don't see that at all - an HB claimant may have no job to lose in the first place while a 'regular' rentee might be made redundant with little notice.

huddspur Fri 29-Oct-10 15:56:06

I would be very unwilling to take anyone who was unemployed as it would mean the house would endure more wear and tear.

MaimAndKilloki Fri 29-Oct-10 15:58:30

Could any of you landlords spare a small bit of time and write to you local MP to tell them these things?

Because there are a lot of us facing homelessness due to HB changes, and the government is leaving us with little choice but to wait on social housing lists. Which isn't your fault, and they seem to be deliberately missing the point about why you can't rent to HB tenants, expecting you to pick up their slack.

Meanwhile leaving some of us tenants terrified.

It really would mean the world to me if any of you could point out the flaws in their plans.

Want2bSupermum Fri 29-Oct-10 15:59:14

I have done in the past and would never rent to anyone not working and on housing benefit again. My reasons are:

1 - Tenant caused GBP50k of damage to the apartment which I was left paying for.

2 - Rent was never paid after six months.

3 - The law makes it very hard to remove someone who isn't paying rent or recover costs from someone who is destroying your property.

I would rent to someone who was disabled or to someone/a couple who were working but on low wage. I would also insist that the housing benefit was paid directly to me with a statement sent to the tenant that the money had been paid and that the council have no recourse from the landlord for housing benefit fraudently claimed.

NoahAndTheWhale Fri 29-Oct-10 16:01:08

We rent privately. I am a SAHM and am at home most of the time. So presumably huddspur you wouldn't want to rent to our family?

Plus we have children. And a pet which means it is likely we will have more wear and tear.

Would you only rent to single people, or a couple, both of whom are at work all day, with no children or pets?

huddspur Fri 29-Oct-10 16:04:26

Apols-my last post was too brief
No I would rent to family with a SAHM provided she was with someone who worked, the real familys I would seek to avoid would be workless familys as I believe that there is a greater chance of damage being done to the property.

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