CMA guidance update on benefits blanket bans
Article Posted - 8th October 2019
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) have updated their guidance on consumer protection law for letting professionals with specific consideration for contractual terms that affect benefit recipients.
The guidance confirms that mortgage terms which prevent landlords from letting to benefit tenants should be disclosed to would-be tenants under the basis that this constitutes material information. However, it confirms that claiming that such a term exists when this is not the case would be deemed as misleading.
This update comes on the back of Government efforts to address the blanket ban on tenants in receipt of benefits. The NLA attended a roundtable hosted by the previous Minister of State for Housing and Homelessness, Heather Wheeler MP, and highlighted the need to address the underlying issue of affordability caused by the long-standing freeze on Local Housing Allowance.
Our advice to landlords has reiterated the need to determine the suitability of each tenant on a case-by-case basis. In doing so, landlords can make informed decisions based on affordability as opposed to pursing blanket bans. This approach has been endorsed by Rightmove and Zoopla and full details of the guidance can be accessed here.
What can you do:
Landlords are encouraged to familiarise themselves with our guidance. For members, services such as NLA Tenant Check are available at a discount to help arrive at informed decisions regarding your would-be tenant.
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