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Level 2 - what now for the Rental Market?

May 25th 2020

Our Ruby Housing office is open again for business and operating with contact tracing and careful control of requested viewings at rental properties.

We are delighted that over 98% of our Ruby Housing tenants continued to pay their rent on time over the Covid 19 lockdown! The very few tenants who were waiting on financial help and were only able to pay part rent initially, let us know promptly so we could keep owners informed.

A few properties had tenants who had left as planned at the end of their lease, just before lockdown, and some others had their leave date extended due to the restriction on movement.

Many of these vacates have now been completed, and new tenants able to move in. A couple of the larger rental homes are taking a little longer to find the right tenants, however as soon as the restrictions were lifted to Level 2 there was a noticeable increase in the number of enquiries and applications.

Despite the limit on access we were able to rent homes over the Levels 3 and 4, using online applications, video, and private viewings.

If you know of a landlord who has been left with a vacant rental, please ask them to contact me today to find out how we can help, or if they would prefer, pass on their details to me and I will give them a call. 

At a time of vacant properties, high stress and potential decreased income it can be tempting for owners to want to take the first tenants who look halfway decent. We understand the pressure of mortgages and holding costs still to be paid, however the risk of a bad tenant who doesn’t pay rent, causes trouble for neighbours, or damages property is too great to  loosen our careful background and credit checks.

Just last week we had applicants for a property who were looking pretty good, tidy and polite, solid income, good work references etc. However at the point of previous property manager checks we discovered the crucial information that these tenants had multiple complaints and 14 day letters about noise, parties and disturbing neighbours. The old “work hard - party hard” practice isn’t the most desirable in a tenanted property in a built-up city environment!

Find out more about avoiding horror tenants.

Rent Increases

  1. With the freeze on rent increases until at least 26th September 2020, we have had to void all planned increases and advise tenants. All these properties will now have rent reviews as soon as permissible, and if an increase is warranted the two month notification would still apply from that date.
  2. In the meantime we will be working with all owners on how to improve the value and desirability of your property. There are key elements that attract and retain quality tenants, which equates to more rental income and shorter vacancy periods

Future Proofing your investment:

  1. Keep in touch with your mortgage manager and accountant to ensure you are receiving the best options for your financial situation.
  2. Property values will go up and down with the market, what makes a property sustainable is what the ROI (return in investment) is. This is where a well-maintained and carefully managed rental will win out long term. If you’d like to talk over ideas for improving your investment, or are interested in assessing rental returns on additional properties, get in touch with me for a chat.


We are always happy to receive referrals! If you know of someone who is struggling with poor tenant selection, late rent or just not enough time to look after their rental properties, I’d love for you to pass on my number or email for a chat.