South and East Belfast Sinn Féin -- Building an Ireland of Equals

Worries over forecast of rise in rent arrears in 2009

Published: 12 December, 2008

South Belfast Sinn Féin MLA Alex Maskey has expressed concern at news that nearly three-quarters of landlords are bracing themselves for a rise in the number of tenants falling behind with their rent.


Alex Maskey MLA said,

"The latest news coming from the British based National Landlords Association (NLA) in regards to rent arrears is very worrying. They fear nearly three-quarters of landlords are bracing themselves for a rise in the number of tenants falling behind with their rent. Around 71% of those on the buy-to-let investors expect rent arrears to increase in 2009 as the economic situation worsens and unemployment rises.


"Currently just over a third of landlords said they were experiencing payment difficulties from their tenants.


"Locally, I have very serious concerns about the number of people currently facing difficulties with their rent. Given the current economic climate there are very real fears that more and more people will fall into difficulties, particularly given the spiralling level of homelessness and current crisis in social housing. Furthermore, I would appeal to people who are in debt not to be taken in by those offering loans, or worse, moneylenders who are lending money at exorbitant rates of interest.


"We need to do all we can here to get more assistance and help for their tenants who are in rent arrears to avoid further problems down the line and adding to the already bursting housing waiting lists". CRÍOCH