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News & Updates

Rogue landlord guilty of unlawfully evicting tenant

A rogue landlord has pleaded guilty to unlawfully evicting her tenant and has been sentenced to a community order. Mrs Rukhsana Tariq pleaded guilty to unlawfully evicting her tenant Mr Hakeem Shiittu from his room in Williamson Way, Oxford. The court heard that on 7 April 2012, the 38-year-old dumped Mr Shittu’s belongings outside, changed the lock to the front door and refused to allow him back in. Following the unlawful eviction, Mr Shittu was forced to sleep rough on several occasions.

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A LANDLORD is facing a bill of thousands of pounds after bad tenants left his property in a "disgusting" state and failed to pay £1,200 in rent. Read more: http://www.thisisgrimsby.co.uk/Landlord-s-fury-drugs-filth-left-bad-tenants/story-18182229-detail/

A LANDLORD is facing a bill of thousands of pounds after bad tenants left his property in a "disgusting" state and failed to pay £1,200 in rent. Anthony Thomas has owned the house, in Buller Street, Grimsby, for the past eight years and has never experienced a problem before.

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Council homes: changes to funding could help tenants

The Welsh and UK governments are discussing changes to the way money is spent on improving council housing. Currently councils hand over millions of pounds of rent payment to the Treasury which then decides where it should be spent. Changes allowing local councils more of a say could benefit tenants who are waiting for improvement work to be carried out, say supporters.

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Pembrokeshire County Council evicts tenants over noise and damage

A Pembrokeshire County Counciltenant was evicted in December from her tenancy in Garfield Gardens, Narberth, following a series of problems with loud music and other noiseduring parties which also resulted in damage being caused to the house. Housing Officers issued a number of warnings about the problems being caused, which were ignored by the tenant. The Council then applied for a possession order against the tenancy, which was granted by the Court. In a related action, the Council successfully obtained an injunction with a power of arrest against a Narberth man, who had caused damage to another Council-owned property in the same street. This action was taken by Housing Officers working in close co-operation with officers from the local Neighbourhood Policing Team.

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Council tenants offered £100 to tidy their own homes

Almost 400 tenants have been handed £100 by city council chiefs after they made sure their council homes were clean and tidy when they moved out. Norwich council's Leave It Tidy incentive scheme cost the Labour-ruled authority £38,000 this year. But council leaders insisted it was money well spent, slashing the amount of time it took to get empty council homes ready for the next occupants.

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Rent rise for council tenants is backed by housing chiefs

Housing chiefs have backed a “disgraceful” rent rise for council tenants. The city council’s housing management board last night voted in favour of increasing rent by an inflation-busting average of 5.2 per cent in April, equivalent to £4.53 a week or £236 annually.

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Message to private landlords: give universal credit a chance

Few systems have caused as much controversy before even being launched as the government's universal credit. It draws together all welfare claims into a single monthly payment, like a salary, so will undoubtedly change the financial landscape for landlords andtenants– yet it has the potential to improve the claims process for all involved.

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Three-quarters of landlords have had to take legal action to end a tenancy

Over 75 per cent of landlords have had to take legal action to end a tenancy, thelatest survey by the RLA has revealed.

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Landlords urge Osborne to axe further welfare cuts

Housing associations have urged the chancellor not to announce further welfare cuts when he delivers his autumn statement next month. In a submission issued ahead of the 5 December announcement, umbrella body the National Housing Federation calls on George Osborne to reject further welfare cuts and ensure a ‘common-sense approach’ is taken with existing reforms due to come in next year.

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Buy-to-let landlords risk being left out of pocket as they fail to do simple checks before investing

Would-be landlords risk being left tens of thousands of pounds out of pocket because they are piling in to a buy-to-let boom without doing proper research. Banks are issuing the largest number of landlord loans since records began. One in eight home loans — around 1.5million — are for rental properties, according to watchdog the Financial Services Authority. Borrowers with big deposits are turning to buy-to-let to protect their nest eggs from plummeting savings rates. 

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London rents soar by A THIRD in just three years as housing costs in capital leave rest of Britain standing

Tenants in Greater London are now paying an eye-watering 32 per cent in rent compared to October 2009, after the average cost increased again in the last year, figures show. In the last 12 months, rental prices have raced ahead by six per cent - or twice the average rate of consumer inflation - to reach £1,240 per month, according to the HomeLet Rental Index. As a result, renting a home in the capital is 16 per cent more expensive than in October 2010 and up 32 per cent higher on October 2009, when the average rent was just £940 per month.

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Council backs crackdown on rogue landlords

A national campaign by a housing charity to stamp out rogue landlords has been backed by the council in Reading. Reading Borough Council has signed up to a campaign by the charity Shelter in a bid to drive up standards in rented housing. In signing up to the initiative, the council has highlighted action it has already taken to clamp down on rogue landlords.

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You can live rent-free but there is a catch: Homeowners put three-bed fleapit on the market for nothing so long as tenant agrees to do the DIY

A couple whose house was trashed by a past tenant and stripped bare by thieves have put their three-bedroomed terrace on the market rent free - as long as the occupier doesn't mind renovating the property while they live there. Private landlords Jax Ayton, 30, and her husband David, 46, have made the unusual proposition as they look for a DIY enthusiast to take on their Darlington property.

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Private landlords evading at least £550 million tax on rental incomes

Buy-to-let and other private landlords are evading over half a billion pounds in tax due on their rental income, new figures reveal. Estimates by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) andseen by the investigative website Exaro, reveal that that every year landlords are evading at least £550 million in tax.

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Squatting in residential buildings is now a criminal offence, but the law may prove complicated to enforce

The government's decision to introduce new legislation to criminalisesquattingin residential buildings throughout England and Wales has been met much interest. Opponents on one side argue that there isn't enough hard evidence to justify the need for the new powers, while proponents on the other are calling for the legislation to be extended to include commercial properties. Though the legislation has been in force for only a few weeks, it has already been used by both private landlords and local authorities.

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Landlord must repay £32,000 from benefit fraud

LANDLORD Naizali Mohmed carried on banking housing benefits even though his tenants moved out years ago.

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The accidental landlord: a solution for damp – try not breathing

Mould is never a good look for a room. It doesn’t work with any colour scheme and it isn’t one of the features renters usually look for in a property. So I was a bit put out when one of my younger tenants called to say there was a mouldy patch on the bedroom wall, just below the window.

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Landlords Need An Accurate Inventory For Their Property

As tenants are on average staying longer in a rented property, landlords are being urged to ensure they have an accurate inventory at the start of the rental period.

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Buy to let fraudsters target landlords and letting agents

Police are warning about fraudsters who are ripping off landlords and tenants by posing as bogus letting agents.

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Rents rise in January for first time ever

In January, the average rent in England and Wales increased by 0.1% to £712 per month, the first time since LSL began compiling the index that rents have risen on a monthly basis in January, and the first monthly rise in three months. As a result, annual rental inflation increased to 4.3% from 4% in December, representing £30 rise in the average monthly rent by in the past year.

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RLA accuses Shelter of using emotional clichés in ‘rogue’ landlord campaign

The Residential Landlords Association has taken homelessness charity Shelter to task over the issue of bad landlords, with the RLA accusing Shelter of using emotional clichés which could rebound on tenants. In particular, the RLA objects to Shelter’s use of the word ‘rogue’ to describe the handful of landlords who the RLA says should more correctly be called ‘criminals’.

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Rising number of landlords making a loss on their buy-to-let property

Rents may have risen in the private sector over the last year, but professional landlords are feeling the pinch.

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Biggest rise in portfolio landlords making a loss

Rents may have risen in the private sector over the last year, but some professional landlords are feeling the pinch, according to the BDRC Continental quarterly Landlords Panel research.

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Landlords oppose proposal to build student housing

When David Brandt bought his first apartment building when he was 18 years old, he thought he was starting on what might be his future career as a landlord.

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Landlords prosper but housing allowance changes pose problems

London’s landlords prospered as rental rates and yields went up in January, but those who let property to people on housing benefits could be in for a more challenging 2012

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Angry landlord finds Abu Qatada is his tenant

A HORRIFIED landlord has learned freed terror suspect Abu Qatada is living in his house — and said: "I want him out."

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Buy to let continues to progress nicely in 2012

As young home-hunters continue to struggle to get on the property ladder, property owners with an eye on the rental market have a vastly greater choice of mortgage deals at signifcantly lower rates than last year, according to Moneyfacts

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London Landlords Facing Rents of Zero Turn Offices Into Condos

More people will be making their homes among the banks and insurance companies of central London as a shrinking financial industry and the prospect of leasing out buildings for free prompts landlords to convert offices into luxury apartments

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Landlord puts all tenant's belongings in the street

A landlord took extreme measures when he changed the locks on his property and put all his tenant's belongings in the street, while the tenant was away travelling.

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Tiny demand from tenants as landlords still chase Olympic gold

Landlords hopeful of hitting gold in the Olympics by charging four times normal rents are continuing to inundate letting agents

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Olympic housing crunch: London landlords evict tenants to gouge tourists

Landlords in Britain’s capital are evicting tenants so they can cash in on this summer’s Olympic Games by charging tourists many times the usual rent.

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Dale Farm eviction cost £7million

The total cost of evicting travellers from the illegal Dale Farm site came in significantly under budget at just over £7million, Basildon Council has revealed

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Deposit scheme publishes new guide for landlords and agents

Tenancy deposit scheme mydeposits has released an online checklist for landlords and letting agents to help them in any dispute with their tenant over the return of the deposit.

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Tenants priced out of their homes by Olympics as landlrods cash in

Tenants are being driven out of their homes during the Olympics so their landlords can cash in on soaring rents.

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Landlord group offers cold weather advice to property owners

With a cold snap sweeping across the UK, The Landlord Syndicate, a network of companies providing a complete support centre for landlords, is offering advice to landlords on preparing both their properties and tenants for freezing conditions.

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Landlords failing to provide proper inventories

The majority of the inventories presented to deposit scheme adjudicators are not worth the paper they are written on, leading to landlords losing deposit cases, the Association of Independent Inventory Clerks has claimed.

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Landlords less likely to be active in market this year

Increased buying and selling activity was recorded in the Private Rented Sector in 2011 but may not continue in 2012, according to the latest landlord survey.

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Alleged mortgage fraud victims could face repossessions

Individuals believed to have suffered at the hands of a suspected mortgage fraud are facing the threat of repossession.

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Councils fail to spend thousands earmarked for housing poor tenants

Local authorities left almost £1m unspent in discretionary payments that should have been granted to residents in need

Councils have failed to spend almost a million pounds in discretionary housing payments

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Landlord urges tenancy cheats to come clean during fraud amnesty

A housing group is allowing fraudulent tenants to hand in the keys to their properties without risk of prosecution as part of a month-long amnesty

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Amendment vital to welfare reform bill

After publication of the Welfare Reform Bill last year, many expressed concern about its plan to pay housing benefit direct to tenants instead of landlords.

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Oxford licensing of all HMOs is'draconian', says agent

A city council has started licensing every House in Multiple Occupation as from this week –with the decision proving highly divisive.

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Council tenant facing eviction after postman assault

A Sheffield man who assaulted a postman is likely to lose his council home.

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'Nightmare' tenant faces eviction over all-night parties

A WOMAN is facing eviction from her house in Bransholme after disturbing neighbours with all-night parties.

The tenant in Stroud Crescent East has been given a final warning to leave the property or be forcibly removed.

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Flintshire Council tenants owe more than £1 million in rent

COUNCIL tenants in Flintshire owe more than £1 million in rent arrears, latest figures have revealed.

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Eviction for man who stole neighbour’s boiler

A 31-year-old council tenant has lost his home after being convicted of burglary and serving time in prison.

Adam Johnson of 40 Gaunt Way, Gleadless, broke into his neighbour’s property in May 2011.A boiler was stolen and damage valued at £2000 was caused as a result of the break-in. Mr Johnson was given a four-month custodial sentence.

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Tenant’s eviction to end misery for neighbours

A REIGN of terror has ended for neighbours of a Sleaford man who will be evicted from his council flat following a catalogue of anti-social and criminal behaviour

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eBay-style auction site for rental properties

A new eBay-style rental property auction service allows landlords and letting agents to upload their properties so that potential tenants can bid on them.

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Landlord fined for gas safety failure

An Oxford landlord has been fined for endangering the lives of his tenants after consistently failing to provide safety records for gas appliances

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Greater Choice in Deposit Protection for Private Sector Landlords

A new tenancy deposit protection scheme for private sector landlords has been launched today by the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, TDS, in association with the Residential Landlords Association, RLA.

Until now, the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, which already protects £1 Billion worth of deposits, the largest number of tenancy deposits protected by any deposit protection scheme, has been available primarily to regulated letting agents. Following extensive consultation with the Residential Landlords Association, the Tenancy Deposit Scheme will now provide landlords with much greater choice in the market.

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Fewer students but landlord puts up rents

The UK's biggest developer of student accommodation shrugged off news of falling university applications today as a chronic shortage of higher education places allows it to push up rents.

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Landlord activity charges on

The number of landlords that sold a property in the past 12 months increased from 6% to 8% in Q4 2011

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Homelessness builds into a social crisis for coalition

Homelessness, that most visceral signifier of hard times, is on the rise and shaping up to be not merely another policy embarrassment for the coalition, but a fully fledged social crisis.

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Some families still receiving £100,000 a year in housing benefit, latest figures reveal

As the Coalition Government faces mounting criticism over plans to cap housing benefit at £500 per week, figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, show that some local authorities in the capital are still to paying private landlords up to four times that amount.

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Immigrants to have access to council housing and benefits restricted

Housing minister Grant Shapps is expected to publish new guidance for local authorities to ensure recently arrived immigrants have their access to council housing and benefits restricted so local people are given greater priority.

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Housing benefit cap won't make 20,000 homeless - Shapps

A planned cap on housing benefit will not lead to a rise in homelessness, Housing Minister Grant Shapps has said.

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Benefit cheats ordered to pay back money

FIVE benefits cheats who illegally claimed more than £32,000 between them have been ordered to pay back some of the cash.

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Councils 'are turning blind eye' to rise of slum landlords

Children sleep within inches of fungi growing through walls. Immigrants live illegally in sheds in other people's back gardens. These are just two examples of the rise of slum housing in Britain, as individuals and local authorities struggle to cope with a 21st-century housing crisis which has led to unscrupulous "slum landlords" profiteering from society's most vulnerable.

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Leaked memo shows government lied over its homeless policies

Welfare cuts could make 40,000 homeless according to a leaked letter sent on behalf of Eric Pickles (cabinet minister responsible for housing) by his private secretary to the prime minister on the planned benefit caps.

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Slum landlords are back in Britain

Our investigations found dozens of tenants left in squalor by unregulated landlords – maybe a little red tape is a good thing. Tenants fear being made homeless if they complain about conditions.

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Avoiding Eviction

Figures released for the first quarter of this year by the Ministry of Justice show an evident snapshot of the housing crisis by creepingevictionnotices edging up throughout the UK. As you would surmise, London held the highest figures.

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Revenge of the repossessed

This April marked four years since the collapse of New Century Financial, a top US sub-prime mortgage lender, which arguably lit the fuse of the global financial crisis. The scale of home loss in the US continues to shock. More than five million homes have been repossessed since 2006 and distressed mortgages account for a third of the entire US housing market. New tent cities have sprung up to house the millions who have lost their homes, while millions of homes lie empty.

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Lord Freud: The future of housing benefit under Universal Credit

Minister for Welfare Reform Lord Freud gave a key note address to housing professionals on the future of housing benefit payments under the new Universal Credit system during the Chartered Institute of Housing's annual conference in Harrogate last week

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Will welfare reforms affect the housing sector’s financial stability?

Will ending direct payments give tenants more financial freedom and responsibility, or rock housing's fiscal boat?

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Moving the poor out of town doesn't solve poverty

One of the things that has always marked London out is the way poor and rich households live side by side. Foreign visitors in the 18th century marvelled at the easy mixing of classes. Today, even the wealthiest boroughs have their share of council estates.

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Cambridge's affordable housing plans in disarray

A government proposal that new social housing tenants should pay 80% of market rents in Cambridge has been condemned by the city council.

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Editor's blog: In a new political climate, housing must stand up for its values

After months of anxious debate over the future of the social housing sector, this week's Chartered Institute of Housing conference saw signs of a fightback

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Private sector shuns LHA tenants in wake of welfare reforms

Private landlords are turning away social tenants at a time when they are needed most to meet housing need, the Chartered Institute of Housing conference has heard.

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LEYTON: Squatters evicted from house

EIGHT squatters have been evicted from a house in Leyton.

The group moved into the empty property in Dawlish Road in February, and soon attracted complaints from neighbours.

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Policy Exchange calls for sell off to fund new homes

Thinktank says sale of expensive developments could provide cash for new housing

 

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Money on the move

The introduction of a universal credit has left landlords wondering if benefits will bypass them and leave rent unpaid.

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Landlord fined £1,000 over threats

A LANDLORD who threatened and harassed his tenant over rent he thought he was owed has been ordered to pay more than £1,000 in fines and costs.

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Localism bill could have unintended consequences

Housing providers and charities are preparing to fight a rising tide of homelessness.

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Thousands of Londoners may lose their homes after housing benefit changes

More than 80 per cent of people living in privately rented housing in the centre of London face cuts in housing benefit – and could have to move out of their homes, according to the first detailed report into the effect of the Government’s cap on benefit payments.

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The buy-to-let boom is back as lenders return

One person's misfortune is often another's opportunity: this is perhaps truest in the property market.

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Calls for private sector rent review as benefit cuts bite

Shadow minister for welfare reform Karen Buck has called on the Government to honour its commitment to ensuring private rented homes don't spiral out of the reach of local people who have and will see their housing benefit cut under Government plans.

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HRA reform could release £50bn extra cash for housing

Scrapping the housing revenue account will over time give English councils control of more than £50bn in rental income to use for new homes and other capital investments, according to research published today.

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How welfare reform will affect your buy-to-let

Tom* currently receives £110 a week from Gravesham Council to pay for his one-bed flat in Gravesend, Kent. But his stipend will fall to £68 next year, as the coalition’s cuts in local housing allowance (LHA) take effect. His landlord, Marion Money, cannot afford to cover such a hefty shortfall. “The reality is he’s going to move on,” she says.

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Landlords delight and tenant despair as rents reach record highs

Rents reached a new record high in May after four successive months of rises, according to the latest Buy-to-Let Index from LSL Property Services plc.

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London housing crisis: survey finds private sector landlords are reducing housing benefit tenancies

The National Landlords Association believes that in London its members are withdrawing from the local housing allowance market rather than reducing their rents

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REDBRIDGE: Landlords urged to help residents on housing benefits stay in their homes

REDBRIDGE Council is calling on landlords to help make sure tenants can stay in their homes as nationwide changes to housing benefit are introduced.

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London housing crisis: survey finds private sector landlords are reducing housing benefit tenancies

With demand for homes for social rent soaring in the capital and the supply of it slowing up, the private sector has increasingly filled the gap - with, of course, the help of housing benefit, or local housing allowance (LHA) as it is termed in this part of the housing jungle. LHA is, of course, being capped and cut back as part of the government's welfare reforms. The coalition's initial justification was to highlight the handful of atypical central London claimants receiving huge sums in LHA. Boris Johnson has long since preferred to point the finger at landlords.

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Council tenants with six-figure salaries

Better-off people who live in council housing are not as rare as you think, though Government plans may bring this to an end.

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Seven Locks Housing evicts tenant for anti-social behaviour

A 67-YEAR-OLD man has been evicted from his home for making his neighbours lives a misery following persistent acts of anti-social behaviour.

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David Cameron voted 'neighbour from hell'

David Cameron has been handed an anti-social behaviour order and faces eviction after putting ‘the fear of God’ into his neighbours - but it's not the David Cameron who runs the country.

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Why homeless men die 22 years younger

Homeless people are six times more likely to die earlier than the general population, according to new research that reveals a hidden cost of the economic downturn.

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Human rights court to examine eviction

The European Court of Human Rights is to scrutinise the procedures social landlords use to evict unruly tenants.

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Benefit cheat who owned house spared jail

AN Enfield man who bought a two-bedroom flat with £30,000 claimed in illegal benefits has been ordered to do community service.

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18 months for £80,000 benefits cheat

An illegal immigrant who falsely claimed more than £80,000 in benefits has been jailed for 18 months

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Speaking out of turn

When is a u-turn not a u-turn? As the retreats on the Health Bill and weekly bin collections dominate the headlines, it’s tempting to see evidence of similar climbdowns on welfare reform. I’m not so sure.

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Council drops director of housing role to save money

Brent axes top housing job, opposition to minister's complaints plan and Liverpool landlord ordered to repay rent

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Rich to lose their 'subsidised' council homes

Council houses are to be taken away from rich tenants who earn more than £100,000, The Daily Telegraph can disclose.

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Foster families hit by coalition housing reforms

Withdrawal of benefit for spare bedrooms could push claimants 'into poverty' say critics.

Foster carers risk losing up to £700 a year in housing benefit under coalition cuts, which, campaigners claim, will deter families from housing vulnerable children.

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Social housing spare rooms a luxury - welfare minister

Spare bedrooms for people in social housing are a luxury the country can no longer afford, a minister has said.

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Ministers to consider paying housing benefit direct to landlords

Government ministers have reassured housing providers that they will consider paying housing benefit directly to landlords following a debate last night.

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Housing chief outlines case for direct housing benefit payments

Peabody chief executive Steve Howlett has outlined the case for protecting direct payment of housing benefit to social landlords.

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Private landlords shun Housing Benefit tenants

More than half of private residential landlords are planning to reduce the number of properties they let to tenants on Housing Benefit, according to new research from the National Landlords’ Association (NLA).

 

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We need these tough benefit reforms

The legislation that allows the Government to cap the benefits that households receive at £26,000 a year goes through its final stages in the Commons today.

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Higher rental prices could mean increased profits for private landlords

For the many people that have invested in buy to let properties over recent years, returns are set to increase significantly, with one leading industry group stating that whilst rental prices have already reached a record high they are likely to continue their upward spiral over the coming months.

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Council tenants offered cash to move out

Cambridge council house tenants are being offered thousands of pounds to move out of family homes.

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Rics: 'Rents will continue to rise'

Increased tenant demand and low levels of rental properties coming into the market means rental prices are set to rise further, surveyors have predicted.

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Shapps launches tenant panels to hold landlords to account

Housing minister Grant Shapps has announced a programme to prepare residents to sit on tenant panels

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Duncan Smith denies benefits u-turn

Work and pensions minister denies reports of u-turn on benefits cap, Southampton workers to strike and landlords cut tenancies

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If Labour back the grafters will they back the benefits cap?

The Labour leader Ed Miliband is seeking to reposition himself. He was elected as Red Ed, the unions chosen candidate. His election prompted Lord Kinnock to whoop: 'We've got our Party back.

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Rents reached record high in April, survey says

The average rent paid by tenants in England and Wales matched a record monthly high of £692 in April, according to a survey.

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Private Landlords say 'no' to Tenants on Housing Benefit

Searching for suitable and affordable private housing to rent is hard enough with five tenants vying for each available property, but if you’re in receipt of housing benefit, what are your chances?

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Influx of new tenants means rise in rent arrears

A survey says private landlords renting to the social sector will have to deal with new challenges

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'Neighbours from hell' claim eviction breached their human rights

A family evicted from their council house for being "neighbours from hell" are using human rights legislation to attempt to overturn the decision – or be paid compensation.

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Wealthy Council Tenants Could Lose Homes

Council house tenants who earn more than £100,000 could be evicted under plans being considered by the Government.

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Man faces eviction from council house he's hardly used in 12 years

A COUNCIL house tenant is being evicted from his home of 12 years – after it emerged he has hardly ever lived there.

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Landlord blocks £1m home with 10 skips to stop tenants leaving 'without paying him thousands'

A landlord has blocked off his plush £1m home with ten skips to stop his tenants from leaving without paying the £15,000 he claims they owe him. 

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Private landlords are turning down younger tenants ahead of cuts

Landlords are increasingly refusing younger tenants on housing benefit as they prepare for the Government’s cuts to social housing funds. 

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Ramsbottom woman evicted over gas checks

A RAMSBOTTOM woman has been evicted from her home for failing to allow her landlord to carry out a compulsory annual gas checks.

 

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Now is a good time to become a landlord, says property expert

The lettings market could prove particularly lucrative for anybody becoming a landlord in the next few months.

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Police shut down problem housing association home in Bury

Police and Irwell Valley Housing Association in Bury, have successfully evicted the occupants of a house in Bury.

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Manchester housing association: Evictions 'take too long'

A housing association which spent two months trying to evict a drug addict in Greater Manchester is calling for more powers to get rid of problem tenants.

 

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Pensioners 'missing out' on £2,400 in benefits

Pensioners are missing out on as much as £2,400 a year because they do not understand the state benefits that are available to them.

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Thousands of council debts handed to bailiffs .

Basingstoke borough council handed thousands of cases of late council tax payments to bailiffs.

A report published by pressure group Big Brother Watch revealed Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council passed 7,466 cases of unpaid bills to debt recovery agencies and bailiffs between 2007 and 2010.

 

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Rent arrears fears over direct housing benefit payments to tenants

A recent survey of chief executives of North West-based social housing providers has revealed the extent of concern at Government plans to pay housing benefit directly to tenants.

 

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New Housing Benefit System Restores Fairness Says DWP

New Housing Benefit rules come into force today bringing fairness back to the Local Housing Allowance system and cutting the cost of the Housing Benefit bill which has been rising continuously for a decade.

 

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Housing Benefit cut for sharers to take effect early

A controversial change to Housing Benefit will be brought in three months early, welfare reform minister Lord Freud said today.

 

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Immigration fears drive benefit cuts

Controlling immigration is a key driver for the government’s welfare reforms, the prime minister has said.

 

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TBMC sees surge in buy-to-let applications

Specialist lender cites surge in rental demand and lack of affordability of mortgages as reasons for 60 per cent year-on-year jump.

 

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Northern Rock cuts buy-to-let fixed rates by up to 0.4%

Northern Rock has reduced the rates on its two and three-year fixed rate buy-to-let mortgages by up to 0.4 per cent.

 

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Mortgage Trust re-opens its books to buy-to-let lending

Mortgage Trust has returned to the buy-to-let market after closing its books more than three years ago, in February 2008

 

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Council tenants to be given cash to carry out their own repairs

Council tenants are to be offered up to £1,000 a year to maintain their own homes in an attempt to reduce repair bills.

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Leeds landlords fined for licence failures

Breaching housing regulations and failing to licence properties appropriately has led to two landlords - who may have buy to let insurance - being prosecuted at Leeds Magistrates Court and subsequently fined

 

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New survey confirms rental market fears

Landlord Assist is urging student landlords to carefully consider how impending hikes in university tuition fees will impact their business plans.

 

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Woman guilty of swindling £11,500 of benefits

A 42-year-old woman from Wokingham has pleaded guilty to swindling £11,549.90 in housing and council tax benefit.

 

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Benefit money lost in confusion over changes

Some people in Lincolnshire have had their benefits suspended due to confusion over allowance changes.

 

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Eviction fear after rent bill cock-up

BLUNDERING landlords told a shocked Wigan tenant that she could lose her home - after wrongly accusing her of being almost £900 in rent arrears.

 

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Swansea Council threatens drug dealers with eviction

Drug dealers in Swansea risk losing their homes if they are caught selling drugs from council houses

 

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Be a good neighbour or get evicted, Haringey council tenants told

FAMILIES will have to obey a code of conduct when they first move into a council house from now on - or risk being evicted.

 

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Fears over housing benefit cuts

HOUSING benefit payments in Oxford will be cut from today, leading to fears that many families could be forced out of the city. 

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Housing benefit changes: Who will be affected?

Thousands of families across the UK will be affected by changes to housing benefit due to come into force this week - part of the biggest shake-up of the welfare system for decades.

 

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Housing Benefit caps kick in - full measures that apply from 1 April 2011

New Housing Benefit rules come into force today cutting the cost of the national bill which has been rising continuously for a decade, according to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

 

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Expect fewer landlords to accept tenants on benefits

Landlords with tenants on housing benefit, thinking of dropping their rent to meet the new ceiling of £400 a week in order to qualify for rent being paid direct, should be aware that the new regime will only last for a maximum of two years.

 

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Landlady hits out after flat left in filthy condition

A PRIVATE landlord is warning others against taking council tenants after she was left with a filthy flat and an unpaid rent bill of £2,200. 

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Local council "direct payments to landlords" policy extended

The government has temporarily extended the discretion of local authorities to make direct payments to landlords in return for lowering rents

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Housing boss in eviction row 'after young family told to leave against wishes'

A senior councillor has been parachuted into a desirable central London home after a young family was evicted by her housing association against their wishes, it has emerged.

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Councils to pay LHA direct to landlords

Government announces two-year concession in return for affordable rents

Councils will be able to protect private landlords from the government’s new benefits regime for two years.

 

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Housing benefit cuts deter landlords from letting

Some landlords are no longer willing to let properties to people on housing benefits as the government's new lower rates take effect, the BBC has learned.

 

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European Convention On Human Rights Could Affect Private Rental Sector

Legal Experts have express great concern at tenants resisting eviction by stating it’s their human right. A case where a tenant could not be evicted and owed over £3000 could be the start of a “rocky road” for all residential landlords. The Supreme Court (the pinnock case) gave the ruling that human rights must be a consideration.

 

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Tenants forced to grow cannabis

Loan sharks are forcing social housing tenants to convert rooms into cannabis farms when they are unable to make repayments.

 

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Housing benefit cuts to kick in as private rents soar

Tomorrow housing workers and their tenants will face the start of a two-year package of reforms to housing benefit that will have far-reaching effects on families and communities across the whole of the UK.

 

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Budget 2011: Buy-to-let opportunities opened up by stamp duty reforms

The UK is set for the return and major expansion of buy-to-let in the housing market after plans were unveiled for tax cuts on bulk purchases of residential properties.

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Buy-to-let market alive and kicking

Brokers have painted a positive picture of the buy-to-let market for 2010.

 

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Landlords face increasing legal challenges, warns tenants' champion

The introduction of flexible tenancies and housing benefit changes will increasingly lead to legal challenges from tenants, according to Cora Carter.

 

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The Budget 2011: Chancellor George Osborne urged to give helping hand to struggling families

TODAY is D-day and it’s going to spell disaster for struggling ­families across the UK as George “slasher” Osborne announces his ­devastating Budget.

A financial crisis is already looming for many families as some 45 changes to taxes and benefits are due to hit people’s pockets in April.

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DWP considering impact of direct payments

A senior Department for Work and Pensions official has admitted proposed changes to the way benefits are paid could harm social landlords.

 

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Housing benefit changes to make third of England 'unaffordable' for low-income households - research

Government plans to change the way housing benefit is calculated will price low income households out of a third of local authorities in England and push them away from areas with higher employment, new analysis by Shelter and the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) reveals

 

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The rental sector needs improving - here are my five suggestions

Recent data from the Government’s English Housing Survey confirms the growing importance of – love ’em or loathe ’em –private landlords. 

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Government accused of concealing tenant revolt over two-year tenancies

Campaign group Defend Council Housing (DCH) has accused the Government of trying to "sweep under the carpet" the angry response from tenants at threats to secure tenancies and genuinely affordable rents.

 

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Forced to move

New housing benefit rules mean tenants could be priced out of their homes, especially in high-value London and the south east.

 

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Landlords 'must get used to non-direct payments'

Social landlords have to prepare themselves for not getting direct payments of housing benefit, the deputy chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Housing has said.

 

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Balancing the books

The coalition government has introduced major changes to the way social housing is funded. Chloë Stothart looks at the resulting profits and losses for landlords and finds out whether the numbers add up

 

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Uncertainty facing councils under housing reforms

We need to confront the need for planning structures and incentives that reinforce sustainable and socially just outcomes, rather than potentially undermining them

 

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Direct payments would harm credit ratings

A leading ratings agency has warned that housing associations’ credit ratings will suffer if the government decides to pay housing benefit direct to tenants.

 

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Budget 2011: Housing and planning reforms summary and reaction

In today's Budget, Chancellor George Osborne announced a number of housing and and planning reforms to promote growth and help first-time buyers to get on the property ladder

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BUDGET 2011: Britain 'open for business' as red tape and taxes are slashed

George Osborne declared "Britain is open for business" as he unveiled tax cuts to lure major companies to London rather than Paris or Frankfurt.

The Chancellor said he was reversing the country's reliance on debt as he announced a blitz on red tape and a reduction in the cost of doing business.

 

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Housing reforms could lead to greater social inequalities, report warns

Housing and planning reforms could lead to greater social inequality and affect councils that have more low-income families, warns a report from a leading planning thinktank and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation

 

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Letting agent tells tenant there's a better offer...and keeps £350 deposit

Gazumping is on the rise in the rental market, piling on the pain for hard-pressed tenants.

Rents are rising fast in many areas, with some agents recording increases of 20 per cent in London, and competition for the best properties is increasingly fierce. 

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£60,000 benefits windfall for disabled pensioner who failed to claim for TEN years

A disabled Birmingham pensioner in her 80s is celebrating after pocketing an astonishing £60,000 in unclaimed benefits. 

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Bailiffs evict defiant duo from properties from clearance estate

BAILIFFS have evicted the final two residents in a clearance zone who have been involved in a long-running stand-off with a council.

High Court officials evicted neighbours David Gourdie and Connie Armstrong from their terrace properties in Middleport yesterday.

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Landlord left with squatter nightmare because of legal loophole

Squatting is set to be made illegal in a victory for the Telegraph's Stop the Squatters campaign. One case highlights how squatters can exploit legal loopholes to remain in other people's properties.

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Couple locked out by bailiffs had to beg for pets’ return

A COUPLE had to beg for the return of their pets after bailiffs locked them out of their bakery.

 

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Figures show further rise in rents

Rents resumed their upward march during February as there continued to be too few properties available to meet demand, research indicated today.

 

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Lettings data indicate steady rise in cost of renting

Lack of affordable mortgages lead to a small surge in demand for rental properties but many tenants are failing to pay rent on time

 

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Public sector cuts could delay landlords' day in court

Public sector cuts could have an unexpected impact on buy-to-let landlords, writes Lorna Bourke.

 

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Child Poverty Action Group mounts legal challenge to welfare reform

Government's proposed caps to housing benefit would purge parts of UK of welfare claimants, say lawyers.

Caps to housing benefit will mean thousands of families will be forced to migrate, according to the Child Poverty Action Group.

 

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London housing crisis: government plans benefit cuts for 70,000 social tenants households who 'under-occupy' their homes

London housing crisis: government plans benefit cuts for 70,000 social tenants households who 'under-occupy' their homes

 

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Thousands of families to lose out in benefits shake up

THOUSANDS of unemployed people could be homeless and benefits for more than half a million families will be slashed under Tory-led reforms being announced today.

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Benefits reform: disabled people 'terrified' by changes

As the Welfare Reform Bill progresses through Parliament, disabled writer Lucy Glennon writes for Channel 4 News that the reforms could see the disabled become poor, isolated, and forgotten.

 

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Housing benefit cut to hit 450,000 disabled people

Government figures show about 450,000 disabled people will see their incomes cut under one of the changes planned to housing benefit.

 

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Woman on benefits owing £3,500 rent can't be evicted: New European human rights ruling could lead to thousands of tenants refusing to pay

Evicting a woman from her council home for failing to pay rent would breach her human rights, judges ruled yesterday. 

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Council 'concerned' over rent arrears human rights ruling

CIVIC Centre chiefs today said they were 'concerned about the implications' of a ruling that evicting a woman over rent arrears would breach her human rights.

 

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Battle to evict mother on benefits owing £3,500 rent costs taxpayers £200,000

The battle to evict a mother from her home because she owed more than £3,500 in rent arrears ended up costing taxpayers £200,000. 

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Rental costs and arrears falling, says LSL

The cost of renting and rent arrears fell slightly in January compared with the previous month, a survey has suggested.

 

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LANDLORDS CALL FOR TENANT CHOICE

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) is today calling on Parliament to empower tenants and enable them to choose who their Housing Benefits are paid to.

 

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Council tenants owe £1.2m in unpaid rent

Council house tenants in Dudley owe more than £1.2million in unpaid rent, new figures reveal.

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Privately rented homes bust despite sector boom

Even though rental homes are increasingly in demand, the latest figures show that more than 40% do not meet standards

Since mortgages have become harder to get many would-be home owners have had to turn to private rentals

 

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Johann Hari: David Cameron’s assault on the homeless is Dickensian

Earlier this week, the Tory-run Westminster Council, one of the richest in Britain, announced a ban on sleeping on the streets, or feeding anybody who does. They say giving Steven food only “encourages” him to be homeless. So on Tuesday night, I went on one of the soon-to-be-criminalized soup runs. I walked around the neon warrens of the West End – through the theatre-throngs, and past the fancy fashion stores – with two volunteers from the charity the Simon Community 

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100,000 Eastern European migrants now free to claim full benefits in Britain worth tens of millions of pounds after EU ruling

Hundreds of thousands of migrants will gain full access to Britain’s generous benefits system within weeks.

When eight former Eastern Bloc countries joined the EU in 2004, rules were put in place to restrict access to welfare. 

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Exeter council to explain housing benefit changes

People living in Exeter who claim housing benefit will soon be told about changes to the system. 

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The council house mum on benefits (with a husband in prison) who has got a swimming pool in her back garden

From the front, the houses on the deprived council estate in a former mining village look much the same.

But to the astonishment of local authority inspectors, one property was hiding a feature that made it the envy of all the neighbours. 

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Benefit cuts will leave a third of UK 'too costly for low-income households'

Changes in housing support will force many to move within 10 years, survey by leading housing organisations finds

Low-income households including single-parent families may find themselves forced into areas with lower rent but high unemployment within a decade, according to a new survey.

 

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Rent prices down in buoyant buy-to-let market

The cost of renting a home in England and Wales fell in January, according to a survey from LSL Property Services.

 

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Rents slip as buy-to-let attracts investors

Rents in England and Wales fell slightly in January, as the buy-to-let market saw a growing number of investors

 

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Human rights ruling halts eviction

Councils could face increased pressure not to evict tenants who go into arrears after a Supreme Court ruling.

 

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£200k taxpayers’ cash to evict mum

A BIZARRE legal battle to evict a family has cost taxpayers £200,000.

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Battle to evict mother on benefits owing £3,500 rent costs taxpayers £200,000

The battle to evict a mother from her home because she owed more than £3,500 in rent arrears ended up costing taxpayers £200,000.

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Major housing benefit climbdown as welfare reform unveiled

The government has backtracked on plans to cut housing benefit as it unveiled the biggest shake-up of welfare for a generation.

 

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Welfare reform: 'most radical shake-up for 60 years'

The aim is for a simpler, cheaper system that will save £18bn in four years. But the unseemly rush for savings has casualties, such as the concept that national insurance is an insurance policy

 

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WALTHAM FOREST: Housing benefits reform "will lead to overcrowding"

REFORMS to the housing benefit system could worsen the problem of overcrowded housing, a minister has warned

 

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Council tenants to suffer rents hike

THURROCK Council tenants could be feeling the pinch as the authority decides whether or not to put rents up by 6.69 per cent.

 

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Big rent rises predicted for 2011

Tenants already struggling after big increases last year now face a rise of up to 8%, says agent Savills – a blow to first-time buyers

 

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Court closures: More bad news for landlords?

As if residential landlords have not had it tough enough over the last few years, what with the deposit protection scheme and the increase in the high rental threshold, the Government has announced the closure of 49 county courts in England and Wales.

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Direct payments to social landlords retained in Welfare reform

The housing component of the new Universal Credit will still be paid directly to social landlords, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) confirmed this morning.

 

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Social landlords will continue to receive housing benefit payments directly under the government’s new welfare reforms.

The Welfare Reform Bill, unveiled this morning, includes a provision for the housing element of the new universal credit, which will combine all in-work benefits into a single payment, to be paid direct to the landlord.

 

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Rents down for second month in row

Rents fell for the second month in a row during January as investors piled into the buy-to-let market, but residents in London saw rents increase, research has indicated.

 

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Thousands of families to lose out in benefits shake up

THOUSANDS of unemployed people could be homeless and benefits for more than half a million families will be slashed under Tory-led reforms being announced today.

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The Welfare Bill: a good start, but much more is needed

So what should we make of the Welfare Reform Bill published yesterday? Well, one thing’s for certain: it’s going to take us all a long time to get our heads around the sheer volume of material that has been published.

 

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Cornwall Council benefits work given 'fair' rating

People in Cornwall are getting only a "fair" housing benefits service, the Audit Commission says.

 

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Soldier's mum faces eviction over death payout

THE mother of the youngest soldier to be killed in Afghanistan is facing eviction from her family home because she refuses to use a death-in-service payment to pay her rent.

 

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Welfare reforms will limit direct payments

Social landlords will only be able to claim direct payments of housing benefit for vulnerable tenants, the Department for Work and Pensions revealed last night.

 

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Cameron's plans resemble social cleansing on a grand scale

Campaigners pledged today to fight Prime Minister David Cameron's ruthless scheme for mass expulsions of poorer tenants from up-market areas to clear the way for his greed-ridden Big Society.

 

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Landlord confidence falls

Landlord confidence in the rental market fell slightly in February, reveals the Upad Landlord Confidence Index.

 

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Rental costs and arrears falling, says LSL

The cost of renting and rent arrears fell slightly in January compared with the previous month, a survey has suggested.

However, both remained at relatively high levels, the research by LSL Property Services indicated.

 

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Some buy to let mortgage customers need state help, says NLA

The government must provide support for buy to let mortgage holders who take on people on housing benefits, an expert from the National Landlords Association has claimed

 

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Council tenants face rent rise

TENANTS in the Winchester district’s 5,000 council houses will have to find £5.57 more each week for rent.

City council cabinet members backed the 6.47 per cent rise, which left tenants group, Tact, ‘frustrated’.

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Door slammed on tax-funded homes for life: Tenants will be forced to leave if pay rises and once children leave

Ministers will today move to end the scandal of people living in taxpayer-funded council homes despite earning tens of thousands of pounds a year.

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Landlords on top as rental market takes off

With property prices still easing their way out of the trough created across most of Europe by the financial crisis, those who can afford to buy have rarely had it so good. A recent survey by the UK's Association of Residential Letting Agents has uncovered more confidence than ever before amongst landlords in the popularity of renting

 

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Squatter taken to hospital after being evicted from house

A SQUATTER with a pacemaker was taken to hospital this morning (Wednesday) complaining of shortness of breath after bailiffs were ordered to evict him and two others from a Kenton home.

 

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'More than 130,000 households face £475 cut in housing benefit'

More than 130,000 hard up households will suffer an average annual cut of £475 from their housing benefit payments if they are out of work for more than a year – despite the fact that claimants will have already proved that they have been actively looking for a job throughout that period, the National Housing Federation has warned.

 

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Housing benefit cuts to hit 62,000 people in the North - NHF

More than 62,000 jobless people in the North of England could be plunged into poverty, debt and even forced out of their own homes according to the National Housing Federation (NHF).

 

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£22k dole claimed while man worked

DOLE cheat Darren Batchelor plundered more than £22,000 he was not entitled to by claiming benefits while he was working.

 

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Brothers guilty of housing benefits scam

THREE brothers who scammed benefits from a trio of London boroughs were handed suspended jail sentences last week and ordered to fork out £55,000 in costs.

 

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Benefit cheats to pay back £13,000

Three benefit cheats will have to pay back a total of more than £13,000 after being pursued by the council

 

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Benefit claimants urged to come forward before new rules

BENEFITS bosses are frantically trying to notify more than 2,000 claimants that their housing benefit may be reduced, under new government guidelines.

Wycombe District Council's sent letters to about 2,500 residents who currently claim housing benefits and who may be affected by new government rules.

 

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Benefit gypsies lose £1.2m home

A FAMILY of gypsies living in a £1.2million council house have been told they are being evicted.

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Housing benefit cuts set to make 3,000 Merton residents poorer

As many as 3,000 of Merton’s poorest residents could be made worse off as a result of the Government’s proposals to shake up housing benefit policy, prompting fears they could be plunged below the poverty line. 

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SEAFORD: Woman wrongly claimed benefits worth thousands

A SEAFORD resident was prosecuted by Lewes District Council after they fraudulently claimed more than £2,000 in benefits.

 

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Direct payments on housing benefit in doubt

It appears the housing benefit component of the new Universal Credit - due to come into force by 2013 - could be paid directly to tenants following comments made by welfare reform minister Lord Freud 

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Affordable Rent Q&A

The Homes and Communities Agency prospectus on Affordable Rent is due to be published next week. In the meantime, Ian Graham, partner at Trowers and Hamlins, covers some points RPs can usefully consider now:

 

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Central London property rents set for 3% rise, report suggests

Residential rents in central London will grow by 3% this year, slightly ahead of the expected increase in average incomes, according to the latest forecasts from property consultants Cluttons.

 

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Buy-to-let market continues to improve

The buy-to-let market grew by 7% in 2010, according to the latest data from the Council of Mortgage Lenders

 

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Spectre of rising arrears to haunt the rental sector

With landlords now more dependant on rental income, tenant arrears is one issue they just cannot ignore

 

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The economics of being a landlord

Landlords have plenty to worry about. In 2008 we had falling property prices and in 2010, while landlords managed to put up rents a fair bit on average, there was also an increase in rental arrears

 

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Buy-to-let market continues to grow

The buy-to-let market is continuing to grow, increasing by seven per cent in 2010 according to the latest data from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML).

 

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Derwentside Homes recovers £200,000 in rent arrears

Derwentside Homes is celebrating the success of its ‘Pay to Stay’ rent arrears campaign after recovering a massive £200,000 debt that will now be invested back into tenants’ homes.

 

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Kevin Cox: New year presents new challenges for landlords

Even at the best of times January is often a tough month financially for most of us. But as we enter into a year of Government and public sector cutbacks, unknown and challenging territory lies ahead for most of us.

 

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Landlords Asked To Consider Lower Rents

Buy to let property owners holding landlord insurance worried about their tenants facing problems paying their monthly rent payments may want to pay close attention to advice given by a housing sector expert who has considered the current picture.

 

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Croydon Council reduces rent arrears

The council has already beaten its target to reduce rent arrears for the current financial year.

The authority’s housing income team has to claw back the £1,296,812 owed. It set a target of five per cent - £64,841 - for the year but the latest figures show £65,582 has already been collected.

 

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Bournemouth council tenants face a 6.1% rent rise

BOURNEMOUTH council tenants face a 6.1 per cent average rent increase thanks to a new government formula.

 

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EPPING FOREST: Chance for council tenants to get on housing ladder

PEOPLE who want to get a foot on the property ladder will have a chance to get help buying a home under a new scheme.

 

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Reforms 'will stigmatise' social housing

Proposals to make social tenancies fixed term, when currently the offer is ‘stay forever’, will change the way people think about their homes and communities 

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Rent arrears rise again say letting agents

The finances of private tenants deteriorated in December, with nearly 12% of all rent unpaid or paid late.

 

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Is now the time to be a buy-to-let landlord?

Stagnant house prices and increasing demand from tenants could provide a good opportunity for landlords.

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Scheme to safeguard tenants' rental deposits

Home rental deposits will have to be handed over by private landlords to an independent arbitrator, under Scottish government plans

 

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Change in law protects tenants if landlord defaults on mortgage

Changes in the law will benefit some private tenants, according to Hackney Citizens Advice Bureau.

Before this change, many private tenants whose landlords had not paid the mortgage were evicted with little or no warning. They had very few rights to try and stay in their home.

 

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Review assesses effect of benefit caps

The government’s £26,000 cap on the benefits a workless family can claim will provide ‘strong incentives’ to return to work, a new report suggests.

 

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Rents for Southend Council tenants will rise by £5 a week

COUNCIL house rents are to increase by about £5 a week to meet strict Government guidelines.

Anna Waite, the Tory councillor for housing, said the council had to raise rents by an average of 7.2 per cent because of the Government’s rent restructuring scheme

 

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Rental arrears source of major concern

Rental arrears and unpaid rent in general are major sources of concern in the buy-to-let sector, with key players and observers noting that the former government’s decision to stop forwarding housing benefits directly to landlords aggravated this situation. According to the newest statistics, 11.7 percent of all rents for residential properties were unpaid during December, representing a noticeable increase from 9.7 percent during the previous month. 

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UK property rent attitudes changing

Attitude to renting property in the UK is changing as fewer people are able to buy and are forced into becoming reluctant tenants, research suggests. 

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Former asylum seeker in £1.2m house accused of benefit fraud.

A former asylum seeker living in a £1.2million house has been charged with benefit fraud.

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Debt 'causing' rise in depression

Debt is being blamed for the growing number of people suffering from mental illness in the South West.

 

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Parliament votes on housing reform before end of consultation

The UK Parliament voted yesterday (17 January 2011) on radical social housing reform measures in the Localism Bill more than two hours before the consultation on the measures was due to end, making it impossible for consultation responses to influence the vote.

 

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The flaw in the plan

Welfare reforms may be well-intentioned but they appear to be near impossible to implement, argues Jeremy Swain

 

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Play the system

Labour-led councils can use the coaltion’s social housing reforms to forge their own agenda

 

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Cause and effect

Each year the Chartered Institute of Housing’s UK housing review analyses the trends in social housing. Here Hal Pawson, Steve Wilcox and John Perry give a sneak preview of this year’s report, which looks at the impact major government reforms will have on the sector. 

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Tenants facing big rise in rent

Tenants living in council homes are set to pay hundreds of pounds extra in rent and heating charges each year

 

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Tenants face £20-a-month rent rise

COUNCIL house tenants in Rotherham were yesterday left facing a rent increase of more than £20 a month after councillors voted through an average rise of almost nine per cent.

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Landlords advised to consider potential problems of tenant unemployment

People contemplating taking out buy to let insurance on a new property may wish to consider the potential problems as well as benefits of the sector before doing so.

 

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Cost of rented accommodation falls

The cost of being a tenant fell for the first time in nearly a year in December but rents are expected to resume their upward march during 2011, research has indicated.

 

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The rental market is changing - be prepared

After a period of fairly straightforward growth, is the private rented sector about to become more complicated?

 

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Neighbour attack tenant is evicted

A VIOLENT thug who smashed a bottle in the face of a neighbour has been evicted from his home — while he is in prison. 

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Squatter moves into 'Eyesore Cottage' and turns it into a dream home... and villagers want him to stay

When a squatter moves in next door, the neighbours are usually the first to complain.

But villagers made an exception for Bill Davies when he took up residence in an empty rundown cottage and then turned it into a dream home. 

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Benefit cheat lawyer jailed

A PRACTISING solicitor who fraudulently claimed more than £9000 in benefits will spend time in custody.

 

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Boom in rental inflation 'coming to an end'

The boom in rental growth is likely to be at an end, think-tank Capital Economics has warned.

 

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Landlords Asked To Consider Lower Rents

Buy to let property owners holding landlord insurance worried about their tenants facing problems paying their monthly rent payments may want to pay close attention to advice given by a housing sector expert who has considered the current picture

 

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Smokers told to stop burning rent money

Some social housing tenants may soon be told to give up smoking in order to pay off rent arrears. 

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UK rents fall as arrears rise

UK's largest network of lettings agents says rent arrears increased to £276m in December as tenants felt the pinch over Christmas.

UK rents fell by 1.2% in December but are expected to rise again in spring.

 

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Property leaders lobby coalition on housing benefit payment

Property leaders urged coalition ministers to keep their pre-election pledge of restoring the direct payment of housing benefit to landlords after new figures today revealed that 11.7% of all UK rent went unpaid in December.

 

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Property industry calls for LHA direct payments

As data published today shows that rental arrears in December reached 11.7% the property industry has again called for direct payment to landlords from Local Housing Allowance (LHA) claimants.

 

 

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Rent arrears rise again say letting agents

The finances of private tenants deteriorated in December, with nearly 12% of all rent unpaid or paid late.

 

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Landlords Fear Rising Defaults As Rent Paid By Credit Card Debt

Rental defaults look set to soar this year as an increasing number of tenants are borrowing on their credit cards to pay their rent.

 

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Private rented sector landlords planning to increase rent to tenants

Four out of ten landlords will put up the price of rent to tenants during the next 12 months, those looking for buy to let buildings insurance have been told.

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Social landlord to introduce football-type red and yellow cards for rent arrears

A new warning system for families at risk of losing their home hopes to kick out rent arrears.

 

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Reluctant landlords: Tips to let your property

IF your home is for sale but you’re at the end of your tether trying to get the price you want, you could find yourself among the growing band of reluctant landlords. While there has been some evidence that property prices are improving, some analysts maintain they will be stable through 2011 while others expect a drop of about 6 to 7 per cent.

 

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Buy to let landlords could face more arrears because of government cuts and credit card payments

Tenant defaults could soar over the next year amid reports that many have borrowed money on a credit card to pay their mortgage or rent over the past year, warns leading tenant eviction and rent collection firm Landlord Assist.

 

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The rich will reap none of the pain and all of the gain of Kenneth Clarke's legal aid cuts

To understand the government's phoney war on fat cat lawyers don't just look at the victims, look at the beneficiaries

 

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Regime change

Like a stonedropped into the middle of a pond, the new affordable rent regime is going to produce ripple effects that go far beyond the apparent intention of giving landlords the flexibility to charge near-market rents on fixed term tenancies.

 

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Fears over effects of benefit cuts

report reveals reforms will result in ‘significant' reductions in income. 

Thousands of north-east residents could suffer as a result of benefit cuts proposed by the UK government, a new study has revealed.

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Housing benefit changes to bring 'misery'

HUNDREDS of Oxford residents could be driven out of the city when housing benefit is slashed this summer, councillors fear.

 

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We need a fair deal

The government must give local authorities a fair deal on housing finance reform if localism is to work

 

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A new year erupts

Are you ready for another explosive year? To stop you getting lost amid the shifting landscape, Lydia Stockdale has the essential guide to the months ahead

 

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Young family homeless after landlords reject benefits

A man and his young family claim they have been left virtually homeless thanks to landlords in the area who are refusing to accept housing benefit tenants.

 

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Looking ahead

The green agenda: Hopes are high that the vaunted renewable heat incentive will do for heat pumps in 2011 what feed-in tariffs did for photovoltaic panels last year. It will not.

 

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How a strategic merger could save smaller housing associations

With budget cuts potentially forcing smaller housing associations out of business, Matthew Caines talks to WM Housing about why they merged and how it has helped them

 

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Plea to save debt service

SHEFFIELD Council has announced it is to lobby the Government to continue paying for 12 debt support workers to help people in deprived neighbourhoods of Sheffield

 

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Landlords confident about their prospects in 2011

Buy to let mortgage holders can be confident about their prospects for the coming 12 months, according to Paragon

 

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Basildon Council could regain housing stock

A council in Essex could regain the direct management of its housing stock under plans which could save up to £1m.

 

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Council house rent rise in Welwyn Garden City and Hatfield condemned

A Labour councillor has angrily condemned a steep rent rise for council house tenants.

 

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Council housing rent in Welwyn Hatfield to increase in April

COUNCIL housing tenants in Welwyn Hatfield will have their rent increased from April this year.

 

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Thousands of council tenants across Leicester face large rent rises

Thousands of council tenants across the city will see their rents rise at almost twice the rate of inflation this year.

 

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Letting agent use 'hits record high'

More people in the UK than ever before are using the services of letting agents in order to find a rental property.

 

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Landlords aim to boost rent prices

It's not easy being a tenant - for one thing, the costs have been rising recently. And they look like they will continue to do so, with 41% of private sector landlords looking to put up their rents in 2011.

 

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Councils face tougher empty homes rules

Councils will have to wait two years before seizing an empty property under plans to tighten the current system, Eric Pickles announced today.

 

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What’s on the cards for 2011?

The events of 2010 caught many in social housing by surprise. To avoid similar shocks in 2011, Inside Housing asks eight housing chiefs to dabble in tarot and predict the year ahead. Nick Duxbury listens in.

 

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Landlord's deposit scheme celebrates reaching one million milestone

The tenancy deposit scheme mydeposits.co.uk recently reached the significant milestone of protecting its one millionth deposit.

 

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Landlords 'must avoid greed this year'

Landlords should not be greedy when it comes to the amount of rent they charge, an expert believes.

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Landlords digest changes in housing benefits

Landlords are watching nervously as the Government fine tunes its plans to cut the soaring cost of housing benefit

 

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Landlords advised to protect against of tenant arrears

Although landlords and letting agents have enjoyed a buoyant year with increased demand for rental properties, there has also been a rise in the number reporting issues with occupants not paying rent, Landlord Assist noted.

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Paragon suggests buy to let mortgage holders hold strong position

Buy to let mortgage holders can be confident about their prospects for the coming 12 months, according to Paragon

 

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Evicting a Tenant – Landlords Do Not Make These Mistakes

Landlords will eventually reach the day that a tenant will stop paying rent. When this happens the landlord is forced to evict the tenant from their property. The state law is very clear about what a landlord can and cannot do during an eviction. If you need to evict a tenant do not make these mistakes.

 

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Four in 10 landlords plan to increase rents in 2011

Four out of 10 landlords in the private rented sector plan to increase the rent they charge tenants in the next year, research from Paragon Group shows.

Paragon’s research shows that 41% of landlords plan to increase rents during 2011, with 55% planning to keep rents at 2010 levels.

 

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Releasing a pension lump sum is the simplest and best solution

Of the four options for early access to pension cash put on the table by the Treasury, the 25 per cent lumpsum approach has to be the front-runner. It is surely the most likely outcome because it ticks so many boxes.

 

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Neighbours shocked by cannabis factory

RESIDENTS have spoken of their shock at hearing an unoccupied council house near their homes was being used as a cannabis factory.

 

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Noisy woman (42) evicted from home

A WOMAN from Bulwell was kicked out of her Nottingham City Homes (NCH) property for Christmas after ignoring repeated warnings about her behaviour.

 

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Tenant could be evicted after county court hearing

A TENANT who was jailed for cooking a hamster in a microwave could be evicted from his home if he steps out of line again.

 

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Cleaner in £24,000 benefit claim fraud

A MUM-of-four who illegally claimed almost £24,000 of benefits while working as a part-time cleaner has been jailed after pleading guilty to fraud

 

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£2m spent on housing benefits in just 90 days

IN JUST three months more than £2 million was paid out by East Staffordshire Borough Council in housing benefits, according to newly released figures.

 

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Bristol City Council Urges Government To Address Housing Benefit Legal Loophole That Costs Local Taxpayers Millions

Bristol City Council has written to the Department of Work and Pensions to address the anomaly of "exempt accomodation" in housing benefits. The council argues that a number of not for profit organisations are claiming inflated housing benefits on behalf of their clients.

 

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£60,000 benefit cheat faces jail

A landlady who made thousands of pounds by renting out bedrooms in her south west London home with its own swimming pool could be jailed after being exposed as a benefits cheat, a council has revealed.

 

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Two million use credit card to pay mortgage or rent

Two million people have used their credit card to pay their mortgage or rent, up 50 per cent in a year, charities have warned.

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Tenant arrears set to soar

Landlords also urged to prepare for impact of Government cuts.

 

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Warning over mortgages and rent paid on credit cards

A growing number of people are paying rent or mortgages with money borrowed on a credit card, a charity says

 

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Advice Given To Buy To Let Investors

Buy to let property investors looking to secure a property and landlord insurance may want to carefully consider the nature of the property and where it is located with greater attention in the wake of comments made in a recent newspaper article

 

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New rules will keep housing up to scratch

LANDLORDS who run poorly-maintained flats and bedsits in Southend are to be targeted in a new crackdown.

 

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Housing benefit cut could double homeless numbers, charities warn

Coalition of 17 charities warn government that cut announced in spending review could put 8,000 more people on streets. Charities working with the homeless have warned the government that the number of people sleeping rough in Britain could double in the next few years

 

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Catching up with subletters

Earlier this month the government announced its latest crackdown on unlawful subletting. Here Emma Vick, counter fraud team manager in Newham, explains how her authority has been tackling the problem.

 

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‘Hold your nerve’, families in property investigation urged

TENANTS threatened with eviction after being caught up in an alleged buy-and-rentback property scam are being urged to hold their nerve.

 

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£8,000 benefits cheat couple had debts

A STRUGGLING husband and wife who fiddled more than £8,000 in benefits have been spared jail.

 

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Payback time for rich Croydon benefit cheat

A speedboat-owning businesswoman has been ordered to pay back more than £200,000 after committing one of the worst cases of fraud against Croydon Council.

 

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The spectre of homelessness is all too real this Christmas

Homelessness symbolised failings in Conservative policy in the 1990s. It's an issue again

 

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Slough council tells tenants 'paying rent is priority'

 A Berkshire council is reminding tenants to continue paying their rent over the holiday period even if Christmas has stretched their budgets.

 

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Q&A round-up: How can your housing association adapt to localism?

If you are considering what changes your organisation will need to implement following the localism bill, have a look at what our experts have to say in this week's Q&A round-up.

 

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Postcode lottery: Ten property hotspots for the New Year

It's been a tough year for buyers and sellers alike. But what does the housing market have in store for 2011?

 

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Single mum has a home for Christmas thanks to Daily Mirror

SINGLE mum Kirsty Lipscombe got an early Christmas present – thanks to Your Money. She got the keys to a new home for her and three-year-old daughter Rhyley-May, just in time for Christmas.

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Buy-to-let set to have a good 2011, Paragon

Gross buy-to-let mortgage lending will rise steadily during 2011.

 

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Interest rates 'will have to rise sixfold in two years'

Interest rates 'will have to rise sixfold in two years'Interest rates will have to rise almost sixfold over the next two years to cope with rising inflation, business leaders have warned.

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Mortgage Lending Drops 5% In November

Mortgage lending has fallen 5% in November from the previous month, official figures show.

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Rents hit record high for third consecutive month

For the tenth consecutive month, property rents have risen.

 

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Rents surged to new high last month

The cost of being a tenant rose to a record high during November as rents increased for the 10th consecutive month, research shows.

 

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Housing crackdown results in illegal sub-letting eviction

A MAN who illegally sub-let his council house has been evicted.

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UK Landlords Given an Opportunity to Avoid Rent Arrears

FCC Paragon has recently made its Collect & Pay Service available all across Great Britain and, according to company experts, it was just the right time to do so.

 

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Homelessness crisis looms as millions struggle with rent and mortgage payments - Shelter

Britain could be on the brink of a homelessness crisis as new research by the housing charity Shelter reveals the number of households in rent or mortgage arrears has more than doubled in the past year

 

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Millions face eviction or repossession

Research carried out by the housing charity found that the number tenants and homeowners in arrears had doubled over the past year and that Britain faced a rise in the number of homeless.

 

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Home owners face repossession amid struggle to sell properties

Home owners are falling behind with their monthly mortgage payments at an alarming rate, charities warn, as estate agents reveal the struggle to sell properties.

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House rentals hit new high in November

A recent survey conducted on property rentals show that rates have hit a new high of £692 on average. According to the LSL property index, rentals have grown for the tenth straight month.

 

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UK home rental costs at new high, letting agents say

The average monthly cost of renting a home rose again in November, to a record £692, according to the LSL property index

 

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Tenant arrears surge 5%

Rising unemployment is taking its toll on the UK private-rented sector, with tenant arrears having surged by 5% in the last month alone.

 

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Rent arrears are ‘never written off’

Rent arrears are never written off in Reading as long as the tenant is alive

 

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There is an alternative

In July, Inside Housing launched What’s the Benefit? to campaign against housing benefit cuts that risk driving thousands of vulnerable people from their homes and into poverty. To meet our third and final aim, here we invite a panel of industry experts to come up with alternative solutions to present to the government. Isabel Hardman reveals the results

 

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Housing cheats cost taxpayers £5 billion a year

Hundreds of thousands of council tenants are illegally renting out their properties in a scam which is costing taxpayers an estimated £5 billion a year, ministers are set to disclose.

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Guildford pair admit £50,000 benefit fraud

A former husband and wife have been given suspended prison sentences for cheating Guildford council taxpayers out of more than £50,000.

 

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Council to expel homeless benefit claimants

A council has admitted it plans to move 80 per cent of homeless housing benefit claimants needing temporary accommodation out of the borough.

 

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What the proposed housing benefit limits will mean

Private tenants in Fitzrovia who are receiving Local Housing Allowance (LHA) face some very stark choices indeed next year. 

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Fears over homelessness in Wales as cuts bite

A perfect storm of job losses and housing benefit cuts will increase homelessness at a time of squeezed budgets, support groups say.

 

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Vulnerable children 'at risk', says Baby P council

The council at the centre of the Baby Peter scandal has warned that vulnerable children could be at risk from government plans to cut housing benefit.

 

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Housing Crisis

Housing crisis: Boris on the trouble with the 'total benefit' cap

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ConDems potentially ruinous housing benefit cuts will evict thousands of families

Ramming potentially ruinous housing benefit cuts through a Commons committee without proper debate adds insult to injury for those threatened with eviction.

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Handpicked ConDems vote for housing benefits cuts that could make thousands homeless by next Christmas

LAWS will be passed today that could make thousands homeless by next Christmas.

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Labour courts Lib Dem MP on key housing benefit vote

A backbench Liberal Democrat MP will cast the crucial vote tomorrow when MPs get a chance to pass judgment on the coalition's fraught housing benefit package.

 

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Housing benefit changes

Areport out this week from the National Centre for Social Research suggests that attitudes to those on benefits are hardening — which might be bad news for the inhabitants of the 17.9 per cent of Oxford homes in which someone receives housing benefit. 

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Landlords Warned of Increasing Rent Arrears

With banks tightening their lending criteria and poor market conditions, more and more people are looking at renting out their properties as a way of earning an extra income rather than leaving their homes empty.

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Scrooge housing bosses send out Xmas cards threatening eviction

SCROOGE housing bosses have sent Christmas cards to their tenants threatening them with eviction over the festive season.

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Social landlord and credit union team up to offer affordable rent

A new affordable loans scheme in the East Midlands is set to help residents at risk of falling prey to loan sharks

 

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Town hall's home rents could treble

COUNCIL house rents could more than treble in a borough due to government reforms, figures reveal. New tenants could see a rise of more than 330 per cent in the next year under the plans. The Chancellor George Osborne said last month that social housing rents for new tenancies would be set at 80 per cent of the private sector. In Southwark, the council said this would see the average weekly cost for a four-bedroom home increase from £95 to £416. A three-bedroom home would increase from £86 to £322 and a two-bed from £80 to £193.

 

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Local Housing Allowance can be paid direct to private landlords again

Local authorities are to be given discretion to make direct payment of Housing Benefit to landlords as an incentive to reduce rents

 

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Housing Crisis:

Housing crisis: local survey shows rents in Barking and Dagenham won't fall as result of local housing allowance reductions

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Landlords asked to chop rents for tenants on benefits

Private sector landlords will be able to choose to receive Local Housing Allowance direct, if they reduce their rents.

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Most landlords will not sacrifice rent, says expert

Only a minority of private landlords will reduce their rents in return for receiving housing benefit direct, an expert has said.

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Housing benefit cap delayed for current claimants

Ministers have confirmed Housing Benefit caps will be delayed for people who already claim it, as a watchdog warns some reforms are "high risk".

 

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Benefit reform to affect children, says department

CUTS TO housing benefits in England and Wales may result in significant numbers of schoolchildren being taught in temporary classrooms as their families are forced to move home, according to a department of work and pensions report.

 

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1.6m benefits claimants have never had a job 'because it does not pay to work'

About 1.6million people in Britain have never worked, Iain Duncan Smith revealed yesterday. 

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1.6M WHO HAVE NEVER WORKED

BRITAIN’S culture of benefits dependency is exposed today as new figures show 1.6 million "workers" never had a job.

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IDS has 'no plans' for benefit concessions

The government has ‘no plans at present’ to review the 10 per cent cut in housing benefit for jobseeker’s allowance claimants, Iain Duncan Smith said today.

 

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The future of the online letting agent

We live in an age of digital technology. The mind boggles at the different types of communication available. As you are reading this online, chances are, you can tell the difference between a face book poke and a tweet. New technology has affected every industry sector prepared to move with the times and letting agencies are no exception.

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Oxford council tenants face big rent rise

A HIKE in weekly rent payments for Oxford’s 8,000 council house tenants could increase the chance of evictions and rising debts, it was feared last night

 

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Tenant who turns around debt difficulties thanks her social housing landlord WDH

A Wakefield woman has enjoyed a remarkable turn-around in her financial fortunes after her social housing landlord Wakefield and District Housing (WDH) helped secure a grant from the Bank Workers Charity that got her back on her feet 

 

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Buy-to-let mortgages that will make your eyes pop

With new deals and record demand, things look good for landlords

 

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Buy to let landlords sign up to get council seal of approval in Hampshire city

500 homes throughout Portsmouth in Hampshire are now let by landlords who have received a seal of approval from the city council.

 

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Building opposition to housing cuts

Planned cuts to housing benefit, and the replacement of secure tenancies with time-limited agreements at up to 80% of market rents, are an ill-conceived threat to tenants and would be a disaster for communities (Social security advisers warn against housing benefit changes, 1 December). These measures will create more evictions, homelessness and fear, but will not curb high rents. They do nothing to create the secure, affordable homes for rent needed by those priced out of the housing market. They will create exclusion zones, driving out the low-paid, the sick and the poor and their families. We urge councillors, MPs, tenants' groups, trade unions, and housing, disability and poverty campaigners to join in a campaign to oppose these cuts.

 

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Landlords warned about DIY evictions

Landlords should seek professional help and not take the law into their own hands when reclaiming possession of a property...

 

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Ministers accused of 'burying' damning report on impact of benefits cuts

Ministers have been accused of "burying" a document that makes a damning assessment of how plans to cut housing benefit will hit families.

 

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Landlords call for government to keep election promise

Landlords have called on the government to keep a promise regarding the future of housing benefit before the general election in May.

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Housing benefit cap delayed by 9 months

A new cap on housing benefit is to be delayed by nine months to give those affected more time to negotiate a cheaper rent or find a new home, it was announced today.

 

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Housing benefit cuts postponed

Sweeping reforms to housing benefit that will see people evicted from homes in expensive areas are to be postponed in a bid to soften the blow, it has emerged.

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Delay for housing benefit reforms until January 2012

Millions of people who currently claim housing benefit are to be given more time before cuts are introduced.

 

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Housing benefit cap to be postponed until January 2012

Move comes amid fears councils have not had time to prepare for possible exodus of tenants from city centres

There are fears that the housing benefit cap will lead to an exodus of people from high-rent areas such as central London. Photograph: Alastair Grant/AP

 

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Housing benefit cap delayed for current claimants

Ministers have confirmed Housing Benefit caps will be delayed for people who already claim it, as a watchdog warns some reforms are "high risk".

 

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Housing benefit cap delayed by nine months following pressure from Liberal Democrats

Plans to cap housing benefit payments at £400 a week have been delayed by nine months after the Government agreed that some families would need time to find a new home.

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Tenants being 'illegally evicted'

Almost 1,000 tenants were illegally evicted from rented properties last year, a national housing charity has revealed.

 

Threshold claimed the number of people being physically removed from their homes was worryingly high, while cases in which tenants were targeted for rent arrears, issues with rent supplement payments and landlords' failure to repair properties were also recorded.

 

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Photo ID plan for council tenants

Photo ID plan for council tenants in Brighton

Photo identification could become compulsory for council tenants in Brighton to prevent fraud.

 

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Housing benefit reforms should not go ahead, warned government advisers

Experts said welfare shakeup could increase crime and homelessness and force poor families to move to deprived areas

 

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Housing benefit reforms attaked by Governments own advisers

THE doomsday ­consequences of the Government’s welfare plans were laid bare yesterday as experts warned of a rise in evictions, more overcrowding and social unrest

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Housing benefit announcement is step in right direction

Commenting on the government’s announcement today about housing benefit reforms, London Councils Executive Member for Housing, Mayor Sir Steve Bullock said

 

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Morning Line: Let's face the facts about housing benefit cuts

Housing Benefit cuts affect both landlords and tenants - not to mention those working and paying taxes, many of whom cannot even dream of living in the sort of homes tenants on benefit can afford.

 

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Housing benefit concessions 'not enough'

Yesterday the Housing Benefit (Amendment) Regulations 2010 were laid. They include some concessions to the widespread criticism of the original proposals in the Emergency Budget and Comprehensive Spending Review. Many organisations working in the field of homelessness feared that the original proposals would cause a rise in homelessness.

 

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Cameron's liaison committee debut

David Cameron parried questions about scrapped aircraft carriers, higher tuition fees and spending cuts with a panache reminiscent of Tony Blair in more benign political times. 

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Housing benefit cuts will stop social unrest, claims Cameron

Social unrest would have been likely if housing benefit payments had not been slashed, David Cameron said today after claims that his cuts would lead to an influx of poor families from inner cities to hard-pressed suburbs.

 

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Savage Housing Benefit Cuts

The savage cuts in housing benefit were never just about finding money to pay off the country's deficit.

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Housing Benefit reforms rescheduled

Ministers have confirmed that they will delay cutting Housing Benefit for existing claimants, and will introduce incentives for private landlords to drop their prices.

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Martin Cheeseman: We cut housing benefit at our own peril

The death of family housing, increased ghettoisation, and the problems facing local authorities. Just some of the consequences of housing benefit cuts

 

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Housing Benefit Delay Secured By Sector But Serious Concerns Remain

The announcement by the Department for Work and Pensions that measures to reduce Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates will be delayed for nine months to January 2012 for existing claimants has been welcomed by the Chartered Institute for Housing (CIH).

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BPF calls for housing benefit paid direct to landlords

The British Property Federation is warning that the government was in danger of breaking a pre-election promise to pay housing benefit directly to landlords.

 

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Housing benefit: Boris welcomes crumbs of comfort

The government's announcement yesterday of changes to the implementation of its housing benefit cuts has been welcomed by both Boris and London Councils. 

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Ministers revise housing benefit reform timetable

Ministers have announced that the introduction of proposed limits on housing benefit will be delayed by up to nine months for people that already claim it, as a watchdog warned that the reforms could cause "substantial displacement" of poor families.

 

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East End peace deal ends housing ‘warfare’

A NEW deal has been reached in the volatile relationship between leaseholders and social landlords to prevent ‘open warfare’ over service charges and repair bills on housing estates.

 

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Court delays are costing landlords thousands in lost income

Landlords are having to wait up to eight weeks to enforce possession of their properties from non-paying tenants, according to a new report.

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Leyland tenant evicted for anti-social behaviour

NEW PROGRESS HOUSING ASSOCIATIONin Leyland continues its drive to clamp down on anti-social behaviour with the eviction of a tenant from its Broadfield estate in Leyland.

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The buy-to-let mortgage market rises again

The history

The rise and fall of the buy-to-let landlord seems to have been linked in with the housing boom and crash

 

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Reluctant landlords on the increase

The recession and subsequent housing market decline has created a wave of reluctant landlords – homeowners who have to let out their property because they cannot sell it, says the Association of Residential Letting Agents.

 

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Grainger cautious about housing sector

Landlord Grainger expressed caution about the outlook for the UK's housing sector as it posted rising profits

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Shake-up for new council tenants

New council and social housing tenants will not necessarily get a lifetime tenancy agreement, housing minister Grant Shapps has said.

 

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Key social housing policy reforms published for consultation - full details

Key social housing reforms which will introduce fixed-term tenures for new council and RSL tenants and will allow housing associations to charge rents at up to 80% of the market rate will be out for consultation today

 

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A council house should not always be for life

Our social housing system is unbalanced and entrenches dependency, says Philip Johnston

Tenants could be given council homes for as little as two years at a time, ministers announced yesterday

 

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Tenant Services Authority to be scrapped

Plans for the “radical reform” of the UK social housing sector announced yesterday by Housing Minister, Grant Shapps, include the scrapping the Tenant Services Authority (TSA).

 

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Get tenants on board

Now that the dust has settled on the Tenant Services Authority review, it is becoming clear that co-regulation between landlords and tenants is here to stay and, if anything, is enhanced by the TSA review.

 

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Eviction closes in on social housing tenants

The government wants to end the one good thing about council housing: some leeway with rent arrears

 

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UK Social Housing Overhaul in Progress

Under planned reforms, tenants of social housing will be eligible to have their financial status checked. After the check and evaluation is complete, if the tenant is deemed financially worthy, they will be given a 6-month grace period before eviction.

 

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Proposed social tenancy reforms could infringe Human Rights law

European human rights laws could override Government proposals to allow some social tenancies to be ended because a tenant’s financial circumstances have improved.

 

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Landlords celebrate rising rents and lower arrears

Property landlords had reason to celebrate in October due to a drop in tenant arrears for the second consecutive month and rising rents for the ninth month in a row.

 

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New U.K. Survey Reveals 42% Predict Higher Property Rents in 2011

Rightmove Plc said the percentage of British people expecting property rents to increase went up in the fourth quarter from a year earlier probably due to a shortage of homes. The survey was carried out from Oct. 4 to Oct. 18, using people who are currently renting and expect to still be renting in a years time

 

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Landlords enjoy falling arrears and rising rents

Tenant arrears dropped significantly last month and rents rose for the ninth consecutive month, according to the latest buy-to-let Index from LSL Property Services.

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Mortgage famine is benefitting buy to let landlords, says expert

Buy-to-let landlords are big winners from the mortgage famine, an expert has noted

 

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Tenants 'expect further rent hikes'

Four out of 10 renters expect the cost of letting a home to continue rising during the coming year as the supply of properties fails to keep pace with demand, a survey has shown.

 

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U.K. Rightmove's Survey Shows 42% Predict Higher Property Rents in 2011

The proportion of Britons expecting an increase in property rents rose in the fourth quarter from a year earlier amid a shortage of homes, Rightmove Plc said. 

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Buy to let landlords enjoy fat profits from the mortgage famine

Buy to let landlords are big winners from the mortgage famine, enjoyingrental yields above 6 per cent and rising while more than half of all tenants feel “trapped”, according to new research by the property website Rightmove. It claims demand from frustrated would-be first time buyers unable to get onto the housing ladder, combined with restricted supply of housing, means rents are rising by up to 10 per cent in some regions.

 

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Frozen property market to continue

Frozen property market to continue 'well into 2012' as banks keep tight grip on lending.

Homeowners desperate to sell were warned today that Britain's property market will remain frozen until 2012 at the earliest. 

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Rent or buy? The property pendulum swings again

New research shows it is cheaper to buy a property than rent in 80% of towns and cities due to falling house prices and rising rents.

 

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Tenants expect further rent hikes

Four out of ten tenants expect the cost of renting a home to continue rising during the coming year as supply fails to keep pace with demand, a survey has shown. 

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Arrears decline in residential buy-to-let sector

Residential landlords in the UK are having to deal with fewer tenants who have fallen into arrears, according to new statistics released by LSL Property Services. While rents continued to increase in October by an average of 0.4 percent, the amount of outstanding rent owed to residential landlords fell from £229.3 million in September to £221 million by the end of the last month.

 

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Reform in a rush

In August we were told that David Cameron was just floating an idea about security of tenure.

 

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Ending lifetime tenancies - 'the wrong solution'

Dr Tim Brown, Director at the Centre for Comparative Housing Research at De Montfort University, discusses today's consultation launched by the Coalition Government to end lifetime tenancies for new social housing tenants

 

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End of council houses for life 'will hurt needy'

Ministers faced accusations last night of penalising the needy as they sounded the death knell for the days of an automatic council house for life.

 

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Reforms 'won't chase people out of homes', says Shapps

Minister Grant Shapps has said people will not be "chased out of their homes" by reforms to social housing in England which could end council homes for life.

 

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Landlords campaign reaches Downing Street

 The Rebalancing the Law campaign has moved one step closer to realising its aim of having the current legal system for tenant eviction changed.

 

 

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Council house tenants set for eviction rule change

Government proposals could see tenants evicted after two years, ending lifetime security in council housing

At present, people given council homes are awarded an indefinite 'secure tenancy' after a 12-month trial.

 

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Human rights could stop gov social tenancy scheme

European human rights laws could override the Government’s proposal that new style social tenancies could be brought to an end if a tenant’s financial circumstances improve says RLA.

 

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Housing reforms 'under review'

Elements of the Government's planned housing benefit reforms are "under review", according to Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith.

 

 

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Court of Appeal acts on tenants'deposits 14 day rule

A ruling by the Court of Appeal has safeguarded landlords from being unfairly penalised if they fail to give tenants information about how their deposits are protected within 14 days.It has ruled that landlords can escape prosecution just as long as the deposits are protected by the time a case is brought.

 

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Eurohypo, Cairn and Schroders to back “virgin loans” on “high-quality buildings”

Eurohypo, Cairn Capital and Schroders have teamed up to launch a fund that will provide £1.5bn of new debt for the finance-starved UK property market.

 

The Cairn Property Debt Fund plans to raise £250m to provide junior debt for new property transactions. It has an exclusive agreement with Eurohypo that gives it first refusal for any new loan underwritten by the bank.

 

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Rental prices still being pushed up

The cost of renting a property in the UK is continuing to rise as potential buyers find themselves unable to get on the ladder.

 

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Landlords celebrate rising rents and lower arrears

In October, UK rents rose by 0.4 per cent to £691pcm, surpassing September's high of £689, data from LSL Property Services' monthly buy-to-let index has shown.

 

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Property Rents Continues to Rise

Renting a property is becoming more expensive as new figures reveal average monthly payments have reached £691 as demand outweighs supply.Rents rose for the ninth consecutive month in October, the latest Buy-to-Let Index from LSL Property Services plc showed.

 

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Private tenants rent price hike

WINCHESTER tenants on housing benefit are likely to have to find between £11 and £17 more each week as cutbacks kick in.

 

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Tenants pull a fast one on Sir Stirling Moss

They say misfortunes come in threes - as motor racing legend Sir Stirling Moss can attest.

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Leading article: We were told to expect better

These are not innocent errors but ones with political consequences. On housing benefit, the real statistics show that landlords will have no need to drop rents – as ministers have suggested – if benefits are cut. Rather, they are far more likely to evict low-income tenants and find other tenants. That would mean that the housing benefit cuts could, after all, lead to mass evictions of people who rely on housing benefit to pay the rent.

 

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Landlords campaign reaches Downing Street

On Monday a petition, signed by almost 5,000 landlords, was delivered to Downing Street by Paul Shamplina, founder of Landlord Action the company spearheading the campaign, Mike Weatherley MP (Hove and Portslade) and Alan Ward, chairman of the Residential Landlords

 

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Council tenants face 6.8% rent hike

Council rents are set to rise by 6.8 per cent from April, prompting fears that tenants face a bleak new year.

The figure emerged in the housing revenue account draft subsidy settlement for 2011/12, which was released last week by the Communities and Local Government department

 

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Landlords warned over problem tenants

A Midland council has warned landlords and tenants in the Cannock Chase area to be careful about who they let stay in their properties after receiving reports of nuisance being caused by former council tenants

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'Fair wear & tear’ causes confusion for landlords

New figures launched by Belvoir Sheffield, the leading letting agent in Sheffield, reveal an increase in confusion surrounding the concept of ‘fair wear and tear’, with over half of landlords questioned struggling to make a sound judgement call at the end of a tenancy period

 

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The real effects of welfare reform

The Labour MP dispels the myths she says the government is employing to justify the welfare reforms.

 

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Rent gazumpers swoop in stampede by tenants

Widespread rental “gazumping” has hit London for the first time as desperate tenants fight to secure homes.

 

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Rental market's now so hot tenants are having to make sealed bids

Has there ever been a better time to be a residential landlord? It seems an astonishing question to ask, with buy-to-letters of new-build inner-city flats still nursing their bruises after that bandwagon crashed.

 

But for those who own quality stock these troubled times are pretty comfortable: tenant demand is so strong that a quarter of tenancies in London are going to sealed bids, according to letting agents Ludlow Thompson.

 

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Possibility of Drop in House Prices Increases First-Time Buyers

A research released on Monday showed that the decline in the hose prices have attracted a lot many fresh or first-time buyers to the property market.

 

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FIRST-TIME BUYER BOOM LIFTS PROPERTY MARKET

FIRST-time property buyers are being tempted back into the market in a sign it is turning around.

 

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First-time Buyers Back on the UK Property Market

A recent report by Rightmove, a property website, decreasing house prices are attracting first-time buyers back onto the market. As such, the proportion of those who plan to purchase a house or apartment of their own in 2011 is 26%, which is up from 22% in July 2010.

 

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First time buyers return to market

House price falls are tempting first-time buyers back to the property market, research has indicated.

 

Around 26% of people who hope to buy their first property during the coming year are first-time buyers, up from a low of 22% in July, according to property website Rightmove.

 

 

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Guide to stop squatters published online

Ministers launched a “fightback” against squatters today, issuing advice to homeowners on how to deal with the threat.

 

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Guide to stop squatters published online

guide for homeowners, aimed at stopping squatters "invading" their property, has been published online. Housing Minister Grant Shapps says he wants to end the "anti-social, undesirable and unfair" practice in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Squatting is a crime in Scotland.

 

 

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Online guide to combat squatters

An online guide offering legal advice to people wanting to stop squatters from entering their property has been published.

 

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Affordable rent’ to derail development

Social landlords in the north and midlands are set to be the biggest losers under the government’s new affordable rent regime Housing associations in the north of England are carrying out financial modelling to see whether the government plan for affordable rents at 80 per cent of market rents will allow them to develop adequate numbers of homes. The government believes the plan will enable 150,000 homes to be built between 2011 and 2014.

 

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Housing Bill debate

Housing Bill debateMSPs debated the Housing Bill , before going on to pass the legislation at decision time on 3 November 2010. The bill will abolish the right to buy for new council and social housing tenants.

 

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Interest Rate Increases Threaten 3m Property Owners

Interest Rate Increases Threaten 3m Property Owners

 

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Inner-city housing costs – and benefits

Many of us who work in housing agree proposed benefit changes must be examined carefully. But the talk of cleansing is nonsense – and may stiffen the coalition's resolve (Report, 27 October). Most inner-city boroughs have a significant social housing sector – in Camden, where your article states 800 families might be displaced, there are and will continue to be over 30,000 low-rent homes for poorer tenants, either council or housing association. And many more low-income or pensioned households struggling in private rent. In population terms that's over half the borough and it will stay over half, cap or no cap. So talk of cleansing is completely unjustified.

 

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Housing benefit cuts pose problem for coalition – but this is not social cleansing

Housing benefit cuts pose problem for coalition – but this is not social cleansingBoris Johnson was right to warn of the adverse effects of this policy – but his language is impossible to justify

 

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Wise councils: Spacious and solid, ex-local authority houses can be a very good deal

Thirty years ago, in October 1980, Margaret Thatcher introduced the right for council house tenants to buy their homes. Millions took her up on the offer, and there are now around two-and-a-half million former council flats and houses in the private sector

 

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The fake landlord scam strikes again

This devious crook has just stolen up to £10,000 in a week by posing as the landlord of somebody else's property. The conman, calling himself Alok Sharma, took out a one-week holiday let of a flat in central London which he later ­re-advertised on the Gumtree website at a bargain rate.

 

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Demand for buy to let mortgages has dropped, claims LettingFocus.com

There is less demand for buy to let mortgages currently than there was a few years ago, according to a LettingFocus.com industry analyst.David Lawrenson, landlord expert at the company, explained that this drop has a lot to do with the weakened state of the overall housing market.

 

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Landlord jailed for wrongful eviction

A LANDLORD who unlawfully evicted his tenant has been jailed. Kenston McIntosh forced out Michael Hutchinson from the property, in Balfour Road, Blackbird Leys, Oxford, in March

 

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Landlords may be keen to increase portfolios

Those with insurance for rented property appear eager to increase their portfolios, with confidence in the market being driven by rising tenant demand.

 

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Buy-to-let optimism continues to grow

Strong growth in tenant demand has helped boost landlords' confidence in the buy-to-let market over the last three months, a new survey has revealed.Just under half (48%) of landlords believe now is a good time to invest in property, according to LSL Property Services, up from 42% in the previous quarter

 

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Rise in rented housing demand

An increase in the demand for rented accommodation has resulted in almost a third of landlords looking to increase their property portfolio, new research says.

 

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Buy-to-let confidence boosted by tenant demand

Buy-to-let confidence boosted by tenant demand

Landlords’ confidence in buy-to-let has risen in the last three months, according to the latest landlord sentiment survey conducted by LSL Property Services plc.

 

 

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Reluctant buy to let landlords return to the rental market

The number of ‘reluctant landlords’ in the private rental sector is on the rise again. Lack of borrowing and demand has forced homeowners to let their properties due to a lack of buyers.

 

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House Doctor

House Doctor: 'Our landlord is a family friend. Do we still have full rights as tenants?'

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Strong tenant demand boosts BTL confidence

Landlords’ confidence in buy-to-let has risen in the last three months, according to the latest landlord sentiment survey conducted by LSL Property Services plc

 

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Landlords claim housing benefit sums are 'fiddled'

Landlords have accused the Coalition Government of "fiddling the figures" on the rising £21bn-a-year cost of housing benefit to justify its controversial cuts in payments to claimants.

 

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Landlord investment appetite grows

Landlord investment appetite growsThe number of landlords who believe that now is the right time to invest in the buy-to-let market has grown over the last quarter, thanks to the continued growth in tenant demand. 

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Landlords hope to expand portfolios

Nearly a third of landlords are looking to increase the number of properties they have as demand for rented accommodation soars, research has indicated.

A study carried out by LSL Property Services, the UK's largest letting agent network, has revealed that approximately 28% of buy-to-let investors are planning to buy more properties during the coming 12 months, while 43% think they will maintain their portfolios at their current size.

 

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Market cools as property prices tumble

AVERAGE property prices have fallen 1.2 per cent in the last three months, according to the latest Halifax house price index.

The closely watched index from the Lloyds Banking Group-owned lender showed house prices rose 1.8 per cent in October which helped to partially reverse the 3.7 per cent decline from the previous month

 

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Falling House Prices

A nasty surprise for 'penny wise' homebuyers despite falling house prices.

Homebuyers who rely on a mortgage valuation report commissioned by their lender, rather than paying more for some form of professional survey, often find they have been ‘penny wise but pound foolish'

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Inflating Prices

Minister accuses landlords of "inflating prices"

The row between Lord Freud and the property industry over the coalition's housing benefit cuts escalated today when the Minister for Welfare Reform accused residential landlords of "inflating their prices" for benefit claimants

 

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House prices show sharp increase

House prices show sharp increase

House prices rose at their fastest rate for 18 months in October after a steep drop during the previous month, new figures show.

 

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Housing Market

Housing market loses £500m as 'desperate' sellers slash prices amid fears of another property plunge 

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Families in Council Houses

Families in council houses could be split up under spending cuts

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Housing Benefit Cuts

Housing benefit cuts: this is the social cleansing of Britain

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Rising Rents

Rising rents reach record high for buy to let landlords

 

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Minister blames landlords for milking the taxpayer

Half of people renting private homes receive housing benefit as Minister blames landlords for milking the taxpayer

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Reluctant landlords are back, say agents

Reluctant landlords – homeowners who would like to sell but are forced to opt to rent instead – are back as the property market struggles.

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Changes to Housing Benefit

David Cameron insists housing benefit reform won't create homeless

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Housing benefit reform

Housing benefit reform: A toxic battleground

Cutting the top rate of housing benefit: The Government insists it was not "fair" that claimants lived in properties many workers could only "dream of".

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UK housing reform

The UK government’s proposed changes to housing benefit have prompted a predictable storm of outrage. But the coalition is right to stand its ground. The existing system is indefensible. It should be changed on moral as well as economic grounds.

 

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Property prices up 3% despite market

Property asking prices jumped by more than 3% during October, with houses in London seeing the biggest rise, as sellers refused to adjust to the new market conditions, research has indicated.

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Shapps welcomes new tenant eviction rules

Housing minister Grant Shapps has today welcomed new rules which mean tenants will no longer live in fear of being evicted from their home with little or no notice.

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Landlord wins landmark Ombudsman victory in benefits battle with tenant

A LANDLORD has won a legal battle to reclaim housing benefit withheld by one of his tenants.

And his victory has been hailed as setting a precedent for other landlords

 

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Greenwich Ferrier Estate tenants unfairly evicted

Residents in part of south London have said they are being unfairly evicted by their local council, which is redeveloping their housing estate.

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