Landlords have been heavily criticised by Shelter within a scathing report into the PRS in which it says over a third of rented homes are sub-standard.

Launched today, Shelter’s major report interviewed 5,177 tenants in the PRS last month and was conducted by YouGov.

It reveals that half said their home hasn’t made them feel safe during the pandemic, that 19% (or 1.6 million people) have been struggling to pay their rent and that 35% (3.6 million) live in poor conditions with electrical hazards, pests or damp.

The charity claims its research shows how badly ‘decent, affordable social homes’ are needed as too many private renters continue to spend the pandemic stuck in ‘poor-quality, expensive and overcrowded accommodation’.

It chief executive Polly Neate says: “Before a thundercloud of homelessness breaks over us, the Chancellor needs to be as swift and bold on housing as we’ve seen him be on jobs. 

“By turbocharging investment in social housing today, we can build ourselves out of this pandemic and lay the foundations of a better future.”

Shelter’s report calls for a rescue package of £12.2 billion over the next two years to fund an additional 50,000 new social homes.

Demonise

“It is important not to demonise landlords, many of whom have worked closely with their tenants during the pandemic and lockdown to reassure them about the security of their tenancy despite facing considerable financial uncertainty themselves,” says leading property management firm Ringley.

“The government cannot expect buy-to-let investors to subsidise renters indefinitely [who] are now facing higher loan repayments as loan repayment holidays did not extend the term but increased the cost.”

Read more stories about Shelter.

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