In the last 12 months we have written many posts on agents and landlords refusing to let to tenants on benefits for a variety of reasons. The tide now appears to be changing, especially in relation to lenders who were prohibiting landlords from letting their properties on buy-to-let mortgages to tenants on benefits.
This month Metro Bank announced that it will be amending its mortgage rules which have previously prevented landlords renting to tenants on benefits. Metro Bank appears to have made this announcement following a round table meeting at Downing Street led by Heather Wheeler MP the Housing Minister.
We have previously posted on Zoopla removing the words ‘No DSS’ from its listing. Some lenders, including NatWest, also appear to have adopted a similar policy. However, the government has been holding meetings with lenders and PRS groups and has threatened to introduce a blanket ban on what could potentially be a discriminatory practice so lenders appear to be reacting voluntarily instead of being compelled.
Ms Wheeler MP, the Housing Minister, is reported to have said:
“Regardless of financial circumstances, everyone should have the same opportunity when looking for a home and I have been determined to end the discrimination those on benefits face.
“Today’s meeting was yet another step forward, marking an important shift in making the private rented sector fairer for all – and I am thrilled that Metro Bank have decided to join us in ending the stigma surrounding tenants on housing benefit.”