We Signed The Manchester Renting Pledge

Brentwood Lettings are a Manchester Based Lettings and Property Management Agent. We are committed to upholding the highest standards for private rented tenants, Manchester City Council have added us to their list of approved and recommended landlords, you can see us on the Manchester City Council Website here

The Manchester Renting Pledge is a public agreement between ourselves, our tenants and Manchester City Council. The standards we pledge to uphold are:

    • I will protect the tenant’s deposit: through an approved deposit protection scheme.

All of our deposits are registered with TDS, you can find out more about TDS here

    • I will supply a written tenancy agreement: it will include the rent and other charges, how to pay, the length of the tenancy and how it can be ended, a list of the contents and their condition, and who pays bills and council tax.

All of our tenants are issued with an AST (Assured Shorthold Tenancy) at the start of their tenancy, a full photographic inventory is supplied of the property before moving in and we support tenants further by registering utilities and services in their name to their new address. Over and above this, we provide every tenant with a welcome pack, giving them useful information about renting a home and how to solve the most common issues that tend to arise through the normal course of a tenancy.

  • I will provide a safe, comfortable, well-maintained home: it will have a gas safety certificate, annual gas checks, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and an energy performance certificate.

All of our properties have a valid gas safety certificate, which is renewed annually, Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are provided and tested, an EPC is issued and if the property has water tanks that store water, we also provide a Legionella Risk Assessment.

  • I will give contact details and notice: including emergency numbers and 24 hours notice if I’m visiting.

We have an out of hours emergency line, and we inform all tenants of any visits 48 hours before the fact, in writing.

  • I will do repairs promptly: if there’s a risk to the tenant or the property, I will deal with it straight away, and will carry out urgent repairs within a few working days.

We have a full property maintenance and repair team in-house, emergency repairs are dealt with immediately and are our highest priority. Non urgent and non emergency repairs are sent for landlord approval and the dealt with at the earliest possible opportunity.

  • I will deal with antisocial behaviour and nuisance: if my tenant is troubled by other people’s behaviour, of if other people complain about my tenant, I will deal with it quickly.

We deal with all complaints and issues immediately and within the guidelines of the law. we work closely with the Police, Community Support Officers, Social Services and Support Workers to find resolutions to issues.

  • I will look after the outside: I will keep the exterior and outside areas of the building in good condition.

We frequently inspect the exterior of all of our managed properties, and do a full interior inspection every 6 months.

  • If I’m an agent I will be a member of a redress scheme.

We are members of the Property Ombudsman Redress Scheme, you can find our more about the Property Ombudsman Redress Scheme here

  • I will consider joining a professional organisation: such as the National Landlords Association, Residential Landlords Association, Association of Residential Lettings Agents, Association of Residential Managing Agents, Manchester Student Homes.

We are members of the NLA, the RLA and ARLA

Investing In The Third Most Valuable Property Market in the UK – Manchester

We often blog about the growing attention and value in the Manchester Property Market, as an independent letting agent, we have our finger on the pulse for all things property in Manchester and can advise you of the local trends and developments in the Manchester Property Market.

Recently The Manchester Evening News ran an article following a study by Hometrack, which set Manchester as the UK’s third most valuable Property Market in the UK. You can read the article here

Interestingly we ran an article earlier this year about the exact same thing, a question was posed to us by the son of one of our landlords, so we did some maths and some research here, you can read our article http://www.brentwood-lettings.co.uk/13-8bn-the-value-of-the-north-manchester-property-market/ for further insights

Selective Licensing – Our experiences so far

Selective Licensing is currently active in North Manchester for 315 properties, this scheme has been in place since March 2017, and has required private landlords to pay Manchester City Council £750 per property to continue letting their properties – under threat of prosecution under Section 95 of the 2004 Housing Act

As one of North Manchester’s leading letting agents, we actively manage properties within this area and have had first hand experience of the process for Selective Licensing.

We are an ARLA registered agency, we are members of the RLA, NFOPP, the NLA and the Property Ombudsman Service. These are not just fancy letters, they all mean things for the way we operate and the standards to which we keep our properties, these associations in themselves regulate our activity, we hold nationally recognised qualifications in Property Lettings and Management and we closely follow latest legislation and regulations.

We do a good job.

Why then, when we pay all of our regulating bodies an annual fee to audit and monitor our activity are we paying Manchester City Council an additional £750/property to confirm what has already been proven beyond doubt by the highest authority in the Housing Market?

 

What Needed to Change?

Of the 315 properties targeted in Crumpsall, we manage or own around 40 of them so are well aware of the localised and wider issues affecting Crumpsall.

One of our regulatory bodies, the RLA, says this about selective licensing:

“An area may be designated for selective licensing either (i) if the area is (or is likely to be) an area of low housing demand or (ii) the area is experiencing a significant and persistent problem caused by anti social behaviour and some or all of the private sector landlords are failing to take action to combat the problem that it will be appropriate for them to take.”

From our experience, Housing Demand in Crumpsall is no lower than other areas in North Manchester, the entire city has high demand for housing, with a booming population and an ever expanding City Centre, affordable and accessible housing is at a high premium. Anti-social behaviour is somewhat out of our remit, we ensure the tenants renting our properties are of good standing, they keep their homes well and they can afford and do pay their rent on time, but anything above neighbour disputes of noise or rubbish, antisocial behaviour is wholly outside our sphere of influence as managing agents or as landlords. The third clause about Private Sector Landlords “failing to take action to combat the problem that it will be appropriate for them to take”, is a little vague, but as ARLA registered agents, we have rules and requirements in place for ensuring we are fit and proper persons to be managing the properties.

Was the problem the landlords, was the problem the demand for property or was the problem Anti-Social Behaviour?

 

Whats the Point?

Every property that we manage in Crumpsall has passed its Licensing Check to date, we had some disputes; at one inspection, that we didn’t attend with the council, they reported we were not eligible for a license for that property because there were no smoke alarms in the property. Immediately we called the tenant, popped round, and as they opened the door, we saw the downstairs smoke alarm in the hallway and within a minute we had checked and verified both smoke alarms in the property were correctly installed and working. When we queried the council, they admitted they had got the property “mixed up with another one”.

At £750 per property and potentially a landlords livelyhood at stake, is this really the kind of mix up that we want to be seeing by Manchester City Council?

Since 2015, If we let a house to someone without smoke alarms, we would be liable for recourse from: ARLA, NLA, RLA, NFOPP, Property Ombudsman and a £5000 civil penalty from the Government. We would be fined, our memberships stripped and we would not be able to operate as an agent.

Whilst its very positive that Manchester City Council are concerned and actively ensuring the safety of its residents, Licensing only applies to the private rented residential sector. Housing Associations/Local Authority housing is exempt, Owner Occupiers are exempt, Student Halls are exempt, live in landlords are exempt and care homes are exempt. So actually, the only properties that are liable are those which are privately rented.

 

Fit & Proper Persons

Selective Licensing essentially is a 5 year certificate to say that you can rent out one particular property. You are checked to be a “Fit and Proper Person”- essentially this is like a Landlords DBS Check, they look for:

  • any criminal convictions to do with violence, drugs, sexual offences or fraud
  • whether we have broken any laws to do with housing or being a landlord
  • whether we have been found guilty of unlawful discrimination
  • whether we have previously managed House(s) in Multiple Occupation (HMO) and broken any approved code of practice.

and they do this for every single property. Just like the ill thought out DBS checks, its a repetition of work and a waste of resources- checking this 40 times in as many days, will not produce any different results, but will keep someone busy and generate £30k of income for the council.

Why are Manchester City Council choosing to line their own pockets at the expense of landlords, agents and ultimately private rented tenants?

 

Do we agree with Selective Licensing?

Yes and no.

We recognise, accept and embrace the need to raise housing standards across the city. We absolutely agree that the rogue landlords and those providing housing that is not fit for habitation need to be cracked down on and dragged to standard.

But, we do not agree that reputable landlords, agents and those working well within the law should be further penalised to make up for the failings of others. Especially when Selective Licensing has been a scheme run in the past and was proven beyond reasonable doubt that it was at best ineffective and a major contributing factor to increasing rental rates in an area.

 

How Could it Improve?

The same scheme has, this week, been rolled out in areas of Rusholme and Moss Side, although Crumpsall was a “pilot”, it seems no changes have been made to the way the system runs and no lessons learned from implementing the initial wave of Licenses.

As the regulations and controls for rogue landlords are already in place by governing bodies, why hasn’t Manchester City Council considered teaming up with reputable and regulated agents, offered an affordable and mutually cooperative package for Licensing to ensure standards are raised and upheld by agents, and Landlords who self manage then have the option to be Licensed and monitored by the council OR use an already licensed agent who then takes liability for maintaining standards.

With over 60% of Manchester Private Rented sector Landlords already using an agent, this would give the landlords choice, the local agents an opportunity to lead the raising of standards, save the council resources AND ultimately prevent the entire burden of the cost of licensing ultimately landing on the tenants lap.

Right now, the way this scheme works, will do nothing to help tenants with affordability.

 

 

 

 

How To Let Your House Faster

This week our lettings manager, Joe, discusses a real life example of a landlord increasing the rent on a property by 35% and managing to let this property within just one day. He talks about the benefits of properly maintaining a property, and how cosmetic improvements can have a huge difference on your return on investment as a landlord.

The North Manchester Rental Property Market continues to boom and demand is at a never before seen level, as an independent agent, Joe is helping landlords across the city realise the potential of their investments and achieve maximum returns. You can see more videos like this on our youtube channel: www.youtube.com/channel/UC1De9fjnKz1NtdI45iZE9XA/videos

To talk further with Joe about Investing in property in North Manchester, call him on 0161 681 3724 or drop him an email joe@brentwood-lettings.co.uk

 

 

DSS or Dogs?

Yesterday a very intersting article was published on the BBC website: No DSS: Most flat shares refuse benefit claimants

It claims that landlords are twice as likely to accept potential tenants who own pets than people who claim benefits.

The article goes on to look at the case of one particular tenant, Eva, who is a single parent, working full time but having her low wage subsidised by Housing Benefit. Day in day out we come across numerous people like Eva, hard working, honest people who have become victims of a stereotype and face discrimination due to their circumstances. We do not recommend or condone lying about your circumstances to obtain a rental property, often with our tenants it is the case that we can sit down and work together to agree affordability and help find a suitable property, as we understand the local market and our landlords tend to be receptive to tenants in receipt of benefits.

The private rented sector has doubled in size since 2002 and now accounts for 20% of all UK households, recent cuts in welfare means benefit payments in many parts of Manchester no longer cover the rest.

You can see our thoughts below on this short video regarding renting to people on housing benefit

 

Every week our Lettings Manager, Joe, makes a short video in response to enquiries throughout the week, if you’re interested in viewing more of our videos you can do so on our YouTube Channel

£13.8bn – The Value of The North Manchester Property Market

“How Much Would it Cost To Buy All The Houses and Flats in North Manchester?”

This fascinating question was posed by the 11-year-old son of one of my landlords when they both popped into my offices. At the time I didn’t have an answer for him, instead throwing my hands in the air I smiled and vaguely answered “hundreds of millions”. I hadn’t ever thought about the total value of the market, so I thought to myself that it would be interesting to sit down and calculate what the total value of all the properties in North Manchester are worth.

Now this isn’t something that you can just google lightly and ping receive an answer, you can readily find information on house prices and trends, you can find population data on a city wide basis and lots of vague demographics dotted around, but nothing readily prepackaged to tell you 1) how many houses are in an area and 2) what the values of those houses are. It took me considerably more work than I first anticipated and became a bit of a mission for me to solve this problem.

I started with the city council, then went to the office for national statistics, then pulled census data and land registry files. I quickly found myself with reams upon reams of data which all gave lots of clues, but no definitive answer.

When I delved into the numbers, the first thing I found was that the average price currently being paid for a North Manchester property stands at £99,229.  Which seemed a little low, so I split the property market down into individual property types in North Manchester; the average numbers come out like this.

 

Curious as to how the figure settled at £99,229 I then looked at the distribution of the types of homes in North Manchester, and found this:

 

Working out of Moston, and area heavily packed with street upon street of terraced houses, I wasn’t too surprised to see terraced houses dominating the statistics for North Manchester. However, what was initially surprising was the figure for the number of flats.

I initially wrote this figure off as being inflated by bedsits, converted homes, flats above shops and some of the larger mixed use commercial buildings. However, I chose to dig a little deeper into the distribution of the types of flats in North Manchester and this is what I found:

 

Although, from working in the North Manchester property market for the best part of my life, I did appreciate there were a fair number of flats, I hadn’t until now got my head around the fact that there were just shy of 28,000 flat in the area, of which over 24,500 were within custom built blocks or tenements.

 

A cool £2.1bn could bag you ALL of the flats in North Manchester. Sitting at the lowest price point the local flats are offering astounding returns on investment as rental properties and are in very high demand with the young professional market.

If you happen to be a multi billionaire, check down the back of your sofa, in that pair of jeans that you don’t wear but are hanging onto incase they fit again or in an old coat pocket- if you happen to find a spare £2.1bn give us a call and we’ll talk about investments.

If you’re not a multi billionaire, and like me you’re just a regular person trying to save for the future and provide security for your family this information may seem pie in the sky, but I promise there is a point to it all.

What does this all mean for North Manchester Investors?  

Well as we enter the unchartered waters of 2017 and beyond, even though property values are already declining in certain parts of the London property market, the outlook in North Manchester remains relatively good as over the last five years, the local property market was a lot more sensible than central London’s.

North Manchester house values will remain resilient for several reasons.  Firstly, demand for rental property remains strong with continued immigration and population growth.  Secondly, with 0.25 per cent interest rates, borrowing has never been so cheap and finally the simple lack of new house building in North Manchester not keeping up with current demand, let alone eating into years and years of under investment – means only one thing – yes it might be a bit of a bumpy ride over the next 12 to 24 months but, in the medium term, property ownership and property investment in North Manchester has always, and will always, ride out the storm.

 

How the EU Referendum is Affecting Manchester Property Prices

The UK’s referendum on whether the country should remain a part of the European Union or leave, which took place at the end of June, has had far-reaching effects in many sectors, and recent figures reveal it’s impacting on property prices throughout the country. Fifty-two percent of those who voted chose to vote Leave, dividing the country, as well as towns, families and neighbourhoods. The long-term effects are still not known, but it appears areas where people voted to leave the EU have been hit hardest in terms of the property market. In fact, of the 47 cities and towns that experienced falling house prices just after the referendum, around 85% voted Leave.

In the year leading up to the referendum, England property prices rose by just over 9% on average. However, figures from July – the first full month after the referendum – revealed that the month-on-month rise had fallen to a far lower 0.4%. The referendum appears to have affected different parts of the country to varying degrees, with many analysts noting that areas that voted to leave the European Union have tended to suffer the most dramatic falls in property prices. While Manchester voted to remain in the EU, some parts of the region voted to leave. These Brexit supporting towns and districts have been the hardest hit by the slow down in house price rises.

Government data reveals that property prices in 47 cities and towns actually dropped immediately after the referendum, and a staggering 40 of these places were among those that voted to exit the EU. One such example is Rochdale, part of Greater Manchester. Rochdale residents voted in favour of leaving the Union, and the town saw a drop in average house prices of over £1,200 in the month after the vote. Similarly, Bury, where just over half of local residents voted in favour of leaving the EU, the average house fell in price by over £1,100.

The government figures also revealed that 278 towns and cities covered by their research saw house prices rise or stay at the same level as before the vote. Of these 278, just 74% had voted to leave the EU. As well as Manchester itself, places such as Stockport and Trafford also voted Remain. All three experienced house price increases in July – £2,222 in Manchester, an impressive £4,000 in Stockport, and £1,344 in Trafford.

The Brexit supporting districts and towns surrounding Manchester may have experienced some falls in property prices in the aftermath of the referendum, but data reveals that it was the north-east of the country that was hit hardest by falling prices. For example, Ribble Valley returned a vote for Leave in the referendum and saw prices drop by nearly £8,000.

Analysts and property industry experts generally believe it is too early to assess what the long-term impact of the referendum result will be, but many are in agreement that those areas that have been hardest hit have so far tended to be those that voted to leave the European Union. Many property experts believe it is likely that house prices will fall in 2017, eventually possibly recovering in the following year.

If you are currently looking to enter the rental property market as a landlord, it’s important to choose your location carefully. This is often fairly straightforward if you live in or near the area you’re planning to buy in, but it can be very difficult if you’re looking further afield for a rental property. The area you choose to buy in will of course depend on your budget and on your target rental market, and while the impact of the referendum result is yet to be fully understood, it’s worth bearing in mind that there might be a fall in EU migrants in the coming months and years. If you were planning to buy in an area with a high proportion of EU workers – for example, near a large hospital where many of the staff are migrant workers – it’s worth bearing in mind that competition among landlords may heat up in the near future. The most sensible course of action is to follow property news – both national and local – and ensure you’re fully informed before you take the plunge.

Becoming a landlord can be an extremely lucrative decision, and property remains one of the best and safest ways to invest. Keeping abreast of Moston property news, and all the local property market developments, will enable you to make the best decisions and enjoy the maximum returns on your investment.

Buy-to-let Mortgages: Bad and Good News

Telegraph Money has been highlighting the plight of buy-to-let investors who have mortgages from lenders that are no longer in business. Many of these mortgages are at uncompetitive rates and the borrowers are at risk of being stuck with them for life, thanks to much stricter lending rules being brought in by the Bank of England.

Elsewhere on this site we’ve discussed the impact of these rules, but this is a new light on a possibly unintended – and certainly undesirable – effect of the stringent new lending regime which the Bank has imposed.

To be fair, the Bank has clearly said that the new regulations should not be imposed on borrowers with existing mortgages who only want to switch to a new deal and don’t want to increase the size of their loan.

Unfortunately, lenders are already making it clear that they don’t want to take on borrowers who can’t meet the new lending criteria, even if they are only looking for a remortgage of their existing borrowing.

This could mean that thousands of borrowers can’t get off the high rates that they are on, when getting off these rates could mitigate the effect of the higher taxes that there are also having to bear on their buy-to-let income.

Telegraph Money spoke to Nationwide, who are the second-biggest buy-to-let lender. Nationwide told them that it isn’t accepting remortgage business from other lenders unless the loan meets the new, more stringent regulations put in place by the Bank of England. It has increased its threshold for the amount that landlords need to have in income. They are now going to need to be getting 145% of their mortgage costs in rent. For years, this percentage was 125%.

Lloyds is the biggest buy-to-let lender and as yet it is remaining tight-lipped over whether borrowers who are seeking a remortgage out of a higher interest rate from another lender, will be allowed to apply under the previous criteria. Apparently, Lloyds is monitoring the market and keeping its policy under review so that it can ensure that borrowers have enough protection.

Luckily, the buy-to-let mortgage market is a diverse one as some of the landlords involved in M9 lettings can testify. Some of the smaller lenders appear to be having a rethink about their lending policies. Barclays and Yorkshire building society are both reviewing their attitude towards people who are remortgaging – until recently they would have allowed these mortgages through on the previous terms.

Simon Checkley, from Private Finance, a firm of mortgage brokers, is reported as saying that the Bank of England has actually allowed lenders to accept customers who want to remortgage from other firms. He’s hoping that lenders will take up this opportunity.

The buy-to-let borrowers who are in the worst position are those with loans from mortgage companies that are no longer in the mortgage market. These companies include Cheltenham and Gloucester and Mortgage Express. These customers cannot get a new deal with their existing lender and if larger lenders are put off lending to them by the Bank of England restrictions, these borrowers are stuck with the loans they’ve got. The real problems are tending to occur when borrowers who took out a mortgage on a fixed-rate deal get to the end of the fixed-rate term and are transferred by the lender to a standard variable rate. Many of them will find that they are paying well in excess of 5%. This is much higher than the rates on offer for borrowers who can meet the new, stricter criteria for lending.

In effect, these people are therefore mortgage prisoners. So is there any good news at all on the buy to let mortgage front? Well yes there is, actually.

One of the specialist lenders, Together, has cut its rates on buy-to-let mortgages so they are now below 7% on loan-to-value ratios of up to 65%. They’ve also announced a new fixed-rate five-year buy-to-let mortgage and upped the maximum amount they will lend to £500,000.

They pride themselves on not using the “computer says no” approach to landlords that is so common among other lenders. They say that a big part of their success in marketing buy-to-let mortgages has been that they acknowledge that no two borrowers are the same.

So when it comes to mortgages in the buy to let market, there’s good news and bad news – but when was that ever not true?

Map shows Manchester ‘property boom’

Student and property enthusiast Ed Howe has created an interactive online map showing all projects currently under construction or proposed in and around Manchester city centre, to demonstrate the clusters of development activity.

Howe is studying for a master’s degree in city planning at Newcastle University and is originally from Salford.

The colour-coded map indicates the locations of proposed buildings, as well as those projects that have been granted planning permission or are under construction. The map also includes transport schemes and masterplan areas.

Click here to view Howe’s Manchester Development Map

Howe said: “I think Manchester is pretty special at the moment, as a city we’re starting to attract a lot of investment and cranes are beginning to bounce up onto the skyline once again, constructing skyline-altering schemes.

“It can be quite difficult to imagine, or remember, all these different developments and I think my map makes Manchester’s regeneration and property boom accessible to the people who actually live here. They can just go on the map, click one of the pointers and find out what’s happening there. My map also shows how Manchester’s built urban core (city centre) will expand in the coming years. We’ve a lot of development frameworks and masterplans around the edge of the city centre, which is currently derelict or underused land unwelcoming to most people. Hopefully, with some thought into quality of design, these developments will push the urban core out enough to start benefitting the traditionally quite detached inner city areas.

“Clearly most of it is taking place in the city centre, but it’s clear to see clusters forming around St Peter’s Square and Victoria/Piccadilly. Transport nodes are seemingly ‘where it’s at’ in terms of property development, and this can only be a good thing in terms of the city’s overall sustainability. Other clusters have formed around Salford Quays and, interestingly, Ordsall, which I believe will become very active in the next 10 years due to it being sandwiched in between the city centre, Salford Quays and the development areas at Middlewood Locks/Central Salford and Pomona. If there’s anywhere to buy property in the city at the moment, I would put my money on Ordsall.

“Some people will be astonished at the number of apartments currently being built or proposed across the city. There are currently just over 4,000 apartments under construction across the city centre, Salford, Hulme and Trafford, nearly 2,000 of those are in the city centre and quite a few of them are conversions of the upper floors of older buildings. All the scaffolding you have to walk under around Deansgate/King St area is mainly because they’re working on the upper floors. Other than that it’s large-scale developments like the one at Cambridge Street by Renaker, which is providing 282 new apartments, or Two Greengate in Salford, also by Renaker, providing nearly 500 apartments altogether.

“If we were to count up all the apartments which are either under construction or holding a planning application within a 2.5-mile radius of the Town Hall, so taking in the city centre, Salford Quays, New Islington, Hulme, that number comes to 16,731 new apartments. If we roughly multiply that by number of bedrooms, it’s a population explosion of about 40,000 people into the urban core. That’s going to provide new shops, restaurants and public services which will, in turn, provide thousands more jobs for people in the inner areas. I’m a strong believer that residential projects in the centre of cities are catalytic in terms of regeneration and Manchester is a case study for that.

“There’s also over 1m square feet of office space under construction in the city centre and central Salford at the minute. Again, this will provide lots more jobs although we’re still building far too little office space which is why businesses in central Manchester now pay the highest rents of any other northern city.”

– See more at: http://www.placenorthwest.co.uk/news/map-shows-manchester-property-boom/#sthash.0TvQReVN.dpuf

We Support a Judicial Review of Clause 24

Brentwood Lettings is very proud to support a new campaign against the unfair and unjust Clause 24.

Steve Bolton and Chris Cooper are co-leading a legal challenge against the Conservative Government via a process known as a “Judicial Review”.

Judicial Review of Clause 24 (Alice in Wonderland Tax Grab) is aimed at disallowing the perfectly legitimate finance costs (including mortgage interest), of individuals who own and operate buy to let properties in their own name but excludes the same for institutions, corporations, wealthy cash buyers and overseas landlords.

If you would like to lend your support to this campaign please visit:

JUDICIAL REVIEW OF CLAUSE 24 – CAMPAIGN WEBSITE

clause 24

 

This Clause 

The Government wishes to continue to tax not just the rental ‘profits’, but will now not allow individual investors to offset the main cost of arriving at that taxable profit, namely the mortgage finance costs.

If you would like to lend your support to this campaign please visit:

JUDICIAL REVIEW OF CLAUSE 24 – CAMPAIGN WEBSITE

 

What’s at stake?

EVERY single business in the UK is allowed to offset their total costs against their income before being taxed (on their profit). The Summer Budget changes this very fundamental and important business principle.

However, it only does so in a way that just discriminates against individual buy to let business owner-operators, who have mortgages/finance costs.

As a result of this change, many thousands of people will find themselves being taxed on loss-making buy-to-let properties, see massive increases in the percentage of tax payable and many will find that they will be pushed upwards into a higher tax bracket, even though they may well not be making a single penny of extra profit!

We want to bring back a level playing field in the private rented sector to challenge the advantage the government is giving to institutional and corporate investors, overseas property buyers and cash-purchasing landlords, none of whom are affected by Clause 24.

In the words of Philip Booth, a Professor of Finance, Public Policy and Ethics at St. Mary’s University:

“To put it quite bluntly, this is an elementary undergraduate public finance error that should not be made in the Treasury.”

A member of ICAEW commented;

“It is a long established principle of taxation that expenses incurred wholly and exclusively for the purposes of the business are deductible when calculating the taxable profits. Clause 24 of the Summer 2015 Finance Bill contravenes that principle and will result in proprietors of property businesses being liable to tax on a fictitious profit – even if the proprietors really make a loss.

The tax change does not just affect new borrowings. Landlords with existing borrowings will be affected. Portfolio landlords will be particularly badly hit.

As a consequence of the tax change, major changes in the private sector will take place. Some landlords will pass on their increased tax by increasing rents. Others will be forced to sell, as they will not be in a position to pay the extra tax demanded by HMRC. Homelessness will increase as some tenants will not be able to afford higher rents and many will be evicted by landlords forced to sell”.

Steve Bolton, who is spear-heading the legal fight on behalf of his 250 strong network of PPP landlords and thousands of other investors, commented:

“It’s not clear why the Government has chosen to just launch an attack on buy-to-let owner-operators with mortgages. It’s a tax from Alice in Wonderland – truly absurd and divorced from real life. Not only is this tax grab unfair, undemocratic and underhanded, but we believe that it could also be unlawful.”

The lawyers supporting Steve Bolton and other interested parties believe that there may be a basis in Human Rights and European law where this can be challenged and over-turned via the courts.

If you would like to lend your support to this campaign please visit:

JUDICIAL REVIEW OF CLAUSE 24 – CAMPAIGN WEBSITE

 

What’s the next step:

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The campaign is seeking a “judicial review”, which is a type of court proceeding where a judge reviews the lawfulness of a decision or action taken by a public body (in this case the Conservative Government).

Specifically we are challenging Clause 24 of the Finance Bill 2015, which we believe unlawfully breaches human rights and/or European Union law.

 

What are the steps and likely timings for a judicial review action?

Screenshot 2015-12-27 14.53.51

Raising £50,000 of funding – as soon as possible

A “pre-action protocol letter” setting out our case to be sent to the Government in January 2016 (latest);

An application for judicial review to be filed with the court in February 2016;

The Government then has 21 days to respond to the application by filing a defence;
If permission is granted, a 1-3 day hearing would then be scheduled by the court and a decision would be made

If you would like to lend your support to this campaign please visit:

JUDICIAL REVIEW OF CLAUSE 24 – CAMPAIGN WEBSITE

 

The legal team:

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Mrs Cherie Blair CBE, QC and Sarah Hannett Omnia Strategy LLP.

 

 

If you would like to lend your support to this campaign please visit:

JUDICIAL REVIEW OF CLAUSE 24 – CAMPAIGN WEBSITE

Individuals affected by Clause 24 if it results in landlords leaving or not investing further in the private rented sector:

Landlords
Lettings agents
BTL lenders
Mortgage brokers
Handymen
Builders
Insurance providers
EPC providers
Suppliers of products and services to the lettings sector – including digital products such as property management software.
Accountants
Furniture providers (HMOs)
Solicitors
Tenants

 

If you would like to lend your support to this campaign please visit:

JUDICIAL REVIEW OF CLAUSE 24 – CAMPAIGN WEBSITE

 

Greenheys Road

**Newly Decorated** Brentwood Lettings are pleased to present this 2 bedroom garden terrace property to rent in…

Price: £ 520.00 pcm

Ashworth Street

**STUNNING REFURBISHED FAMILY HOME** Brentwood Lettings are pleased to offer this 3 bedroom semi detached property to…

Price: £ 700.00 pcm

Holmfield Avenue

**DHSS Welcome** Brentwod Lettings are pleased to offer this spacious 2 bedroom property to rent in Moston.…

Price: £ 550.00 pcm

Hopwood Street

Brentwood Lettings are pleased to offer this well presented 2 bedroom, semi detatched, new build property situated…

Price: £ 650.00 pcm
Featured

Lancaster House

** FULLY FURNISHED APARTMENT** Brentwood Lettings are pleased to offer this newly renovated 2nd floor apartment in…

Price: £ 950.00 pcm

Quilter Grove

Brentwood Lettings are pleased to offer this spacious 2 bedroom property to rent in the popular area…

Price: £ 550.00 pcm

Rowley Street

Brentwood Lettings are pleased to offer this 2 bedroom end terrace property to rent in Ashton-under-Lyne. The…

Price: £ 525.00 pcm
Featured

Abbey Hey Lane

** Stunning 4 Bedroom Family Home** Brentwood Lettings are pleased to present this NEWLY REFURBISHED 4 bedroom…

Price: £ 825.00 pcm

Holgate Street

Brentwood Lettings are pleased to offer this 2 bedroom property to rent in Great Harwood.Ideally located close…

Price: £ 450.00 pcm

Property Management

We manage properties throughout Manchester for investors all over the world. Contact us to talk about your property

Lettings

We provide a let only service for those landlords who wish to self manage their properties

Maintenance

We provide a full range of maintenance services, from safety inspections and repairs right up to full refurbishments

Local Property Experts

We know North Manchester like the back of our hands, chat with us for all the latest news and trends in the area

Investor Tips

Being your people on the ground, we find out about the hottest and most lucrative of local investment opportunities first hand.

Advice & Support

We are available to talk about the Local Property Market and your individual properties whenever suits you, book a call with us today