15% of private landlords say they will stop taking on Local Housing Allowance (LHA) tenants in response to the coalition government's changes to the level of payments, according to BDRC Continental's Landlords panel.
The research strongly suggests that the changes to the level of LHA payments, which will be capped to the 30th percentile of local rents, will drive many private landlord away from social tenants. Other measures, which include a maximum number of 4 bedrooms being available to LHA tenants, will encourage private landlords to take on more private tenants in future instead.
One in four private landlords have already started to investigate how they can decrease the number of LHA tenants they have. But a much higher number, 32%, said they would be taking steps to reduce the number of LHA tenants they have when the rent capping comes into full force early in 2012. Most worryingly, half of all the landlords surveyed said they would be unlikely to take on LHA tenants again in the future.
Mark Long of BDRC Continental said of the panel findings: "The predicted demand for privately rented accommodation has risen since the first quarter of 2011, with LHA claimants accounting for 35 per cent of tenants in the sector. However, the proportion of LHA claimants has already dropped by four per cent since the first quarter of 2011 and a significant number of private landlords are saying they will respond to the capping of the LHA scheme payments by withdrawing from that sector of the private rental market. It will be interesting to track the impact of LHA capping as it plays out across the private rental sector."