Property Tax and Controls - Make Your Vote Count!

May 05, 2015

property let-by-blog-feb-2015Not so long ago home ownership was associated with freedom and liberty but residential property is increasingly the target for tax grabs and controls. 

Recently, the prospect Labour's proposed rent controls is yet another signal that property owners are fair game as a target for tax grabs and/or controlling influences on freehold or leasehold ownership. 

Importantly, rent controls will do nothing for the short to medium term housing supply problems because it will mean less property for the rental market as investors think twice about how far rent controls will go. The result will be less rental property available in the market. 

If you are thinking about making your vote count with a weather eye on freehold / leasehold property ownership, then take a look at these answers to a serious question asked by Rightmove and you will get insight about who has a clear and balanced plan. 

Here is a sample and you can read the full Q & A’s at this link http://www.rightmove.co.uk/news/election-2015

Q. Do you think the private rented sector needs further regulation? 

“I’m in no doubt that standards and landlords’ professionalism need to keep improving. The risk is that more red tape and unnecessary regulation would make life worse for tenants. That’s why we’ve been very careful to strike a balance – and I believe we’re doing so. With our “How to Rent” guide, we’re making tenants aware of their rights and responsibilities. With our Model Tenancy Agreement, we’re helping to reduce agency fees. We’ve introduced a new code of practice for landlords; we’ve given councils more powers to target the rogues. Every step of the way we’ve rejected Labour’s calls for rent controls. Why? Because this interference would be disastrous for tenants, with fewer houses to rent, higher monthly payments and poor quality housing. We’ve seen the proof with Labour’s calls for energy price controls – they actually have the reverse effect of making energy bills more expensive.” 

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David Cameron

Q. Do you think the private rented sector needs further regulation?

“Absolutely. Renters need more stability, because at the moment rents can jump massively from one year to the next. To combat this we will introduce three-year tenancies with a ceiling on excessive rent increases, though tenants will still be able to give notice when they want. 

We will also ban the letting fees charged by agents to tenants – up to £500 every time someone moves. To us, that just looks like a rip-off.”

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Ed Miliband

 

Footnote: An interesting survey out today regarding the views of Scottish landlords can be read at this link  http://www.propertyindustryeye.com/huge-exodus-of-scottish-landlords-forecast-after-government-clampdowns/