Comments : Families who live in rented accommodation are affected the most by the recession
People who live in rented accommodation are having their pockets emptied quicker than the rest of the population with disposable incomes becoming less and less.
This statement comes from the annual Consumer Credit Counselling Service report stating that the amount of tenants who contacted them with debt troubles has amplified to 103,957 making renters 55% of the clients in comparison to the 51% in 2009.
The details showed the average rental fee increased by 2.4% to £408 per month last year which meant the typical amount of funds left for living expenses were £58 - £38 a month. In the last three years, 10,246 renters were in debt which is a raise of 30%. The findings showed that Private Tenants were left in the worst situation with unpaid rent of £924 compared to £705 for renters who owe money to housing associations and £622 being owed to local authorities.
Director of External Affairs for Consumer Credit Counselling Service, Delroy Corinaldi spoke to the Guardian about the shocking findings, ‘A very large number of people are struggling to keep up with their rent payments and with rents near record highs, the problem is getting worse, not better.’
The Property Ombudsman also revealed they dealt with 7,641 complaints relating to lettings in 2011 which is a 26% rise since 2010. The highest number of complaints were concerning bad communication, queries over deposits and the maintenance of the accommodation. The Property Ombudsman’s Christopher Hammer said, ‘Slightly more than 25% of the complains involved letting agents who were not registered with the Ombudsman.’
The rental marketplace is currently unregulated but agents who sign up to The Property Ombudsman’s code of practice abide to maintain certain standards for the renter’s best interest. However, The Property Ombudsman doesn’t have any authority to take legal action against one of their registered firms if reported to be breaking the signed code of conduct and they also have no power to impose the way the firm conducts their business.
Facts were also raised earlier this month that the number of tenants evicted by the courts because of their private landlords rose by 17% since the downturn of the economy in 2007.
Amanda McGovern, Pali Ltd
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