The Coronavirus Impact on Letting Property in Scotland
If you have been living under a rock for the last few months then sadly you must be informed that there is a Global Pandemic which has devastated the economy in a very short space of time. During this time many Tenants may be on the Governments Furlough scheme. This means a reduced salary of 80% or possibly 60% after July.
So what steps can Landlords take to reduce the impact on their finances?
- Try to ask your mortgage provider for a mortgage holiday – Beware though as you will have interest added on to the product, this is unfortunately not a freebie!
- Speak with your Tenants and discuss the financial implications of their situation. We have recently negotiated 80% rental payments with Tenants which can be reviewed. The other option is to offer a rent deferral whereby the mortgage holiday is passed to the Tenant to be repaid at a later date. As ever communication is key to ensuring Tenants and Landlords come to an agreement
- The Scottish Government recently announced a £5m loan for Landlords whose Tenants are in financial difficulty and struggling to pay rent. There are conditions attached to this such as not being part of a company and having five or fewer properties for rental. Consider this as a fail-safe option to protect rental incomes, but as ever beware of the ability to repay the loan and discuss in detail the Tenants prospects of paying rental in the coming months
“In recognition of the severity of the situation we now find the country in, the Scottish Government has passed emergency legislation to protect renters in Scotland during the Covid-19 outbreak. The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 protects tenants in Scotland from any eviction action for up to 6 months. This will apply to both the private and social rented housing sectors and will ensure the position is absolutely clear for all landlords and tenants in Scotland.
This new legislation temporarily extends the amount of notice landlords must give when ending a tenancy. In most cases landlords will now need to give tenants 6 months’ notice, unless they are ending the tenancy for particular reasons, including antisocial and criminal behaviour by the tenant, or where the landlord or their family need to move into the property where the notice period is 3 months.
The legislation also temporarily makes all grounds for eviction in the private rented sector discretionary, ensuring that the Tribunal will be able to use discretion and take all factors relating to the impact of Covid-19 has had on both the landlord and tenant into account before deciding whether to issue an eviction order or not.”