Private landlords have been giving more help to tenants who cannot pay their rent as a result of Covid than those in the social sector according to the English Housing Survey, published today.
Since the start of the pandemic six per cent of private renters had secured a reduction in their rent payments compared to only two per cent in the social sector.
Another five per cent of private renters had agreed a rent holiday with their landlord, compared to three per cent in the social sector and an additional 12 per cent of private tenants had reached another agreement with their landlord, compared to nine per cent of social tenants.
The greater support being provided by private landlords came despite social renters being more likely to be in rent arrears.
In June and July this year, 13 per cent of social renters reported being in arrears compared with seven per cent in the private sector.
The NRLA is warning that whilst these figures are a welcome reflection of the support tenants have been receiving, most landlords have reached the limits of the help they can provide.
Ben Beadle, chief executive of the NRLA, says: “These figures prove what we have been saying, that many private landlords have done everything they can to support renters affected by the pandemic. But their ability to provide further help has run out.
“The government needs a proper plan to get Covid-related arrears paid off and sustain tenancies.
“Simply banning repossessions temporarily is just kicking the can down the road and is just making the eventual problems worse for both tenants and landlords.”