So today is an historic day, when the letter our PM Theresa May has written to trigger Article 50 gets delivered to the European Parliament, by Sir Tim Barrow, the UK’s Permanent Representative to the European Union.
Whatever your personal or political views on Brexit, there can be no doubt that we are entering into one of the biggest constitutional changes in our history, but also a period of great uncertainty and renegotiation, across all sectors of the UK economy.
Stakeholders in the UK’s Private Rented Sector (PRS) such as letting agents, landlords and tenants are unsure what the effects will be for them in the short, medium and long-term, but so far as the law is concerned, in the immediate future nothing will change.
It is my view that we need to see legislative changes to simplify the tenancy deposit rules, and cancel the proposed ban on admin fees tenants pay to letting agents, instead making them fairer and more transparent across the country.
It will be interesting to see what differences leaving the EU will have on issues such as Energy Performance and Right to Rent checks, but perhaps in the short-term the government should make an announcement that we should all ‘…continue on as before‘. This would give the UK Parliament time to consider each individual area of the PRS carefully, to ensure that the sector continues to thrive and provide much needed housing for so many millions.
We recommend that our landlord clients ‘sit tight’ and wait to see what changes will be made, and some may even benefit in the short-term as many people are delaying ‘taking the plunge’ into the UK housing market at this time, given the high levels of economic uncertainty.
As fas as tenants are concerned, there may be more cause for concern, as given the stamp duty hike last April, many foreign and UK based investors were put off buying any further investment properties in the UK, leading to a slump in the numbers of rental properties available. We need more investment in rental properties, to meet demand and ensure rents remain at manageable and affordable levels.
If you’d like to discuss the matters raised in any further details, please do give Simon a call.