As you would expect given the Governments restrictions on movement we have taken the decision to close the office and are working from home. Please be assured that whilst this means we are not accessible personally, the business is continuing as usual and all of our software is cloud based meaning we have full access to all databases, records and banking.
We are continuing viewings and appointments as booked however it goes without saying, should you be displaying any symptoms then we would ask you not to attend.
If you are isolating with your family, please advise the office and they can cancel any planned visits or inspections. If you require assistance in any form, please let us know, if we can help, we will do so.
If you are deemed to be in the high risk category, please let us know. We are aware that some of our tenants live alone and may not have family locally. If you require assistance in terms of getting food or supplies, you will receive priority.
Struggling with Rental Payments
In the weeks and months to come, it is likely that those who are having to stay away from work, or are self employed will see a decrease in their income. The Government has announced this evening some plans to try and help. These include offering landlords with a buy to let mortgage the option to take a ‘holiday’ from payments. It’s important to point out that this is not ‘three months free’ and that money will need paying back in the future.
If you have concerns over your ability to pay rent, contact us without delay and we can look to work with yourself and the landlords to reach a compromise. I need to stress that missed rental payments or arrears will not vanish and that if you do receive a ‘holiday’, the landlord is entitled to claim that money back in the future so would encourage this to be done as a last resort, making a payment of what you can afford, no matter how small would decrease the amount you are asked to pay in the future.
Supermarkets are also offering temporary work on a flexible basis, information can be found here and may be an ideal way to top up or replace earnings on a short term basis – https://www.indeed.co.uk/viewjob?jk=8d559f5faf8087be&from=serp&from=mobRdr&utm_source=%2Fm%2F&utm_medium=redir&utm_campaign=dt
A comprehensive list of available jobs locally can be found here – https://www.indeed.co.uk/jobs?q=&l=thirsk&sort=date
Due to Move House?
If you are due to be moving, this will still go ahead as planned. As you may already know, all our paperwork and contracts are electronic, this is our practice and not a new method. As for collecting keys, we will arrange to meet you at the property and will conduct the move in at that time. Should you be concerned about having contact with the team, let us know and we can arrange a no contact handover where keys are left for you in a secure location to collect.
Self Isolating or High Risk?
If you fall into either of these categories and require assistance, please do let the office know. We are aware that many of you may be finding it difficult in these times.
Will I Receive Rent?
Providing your tenants are able to make continued payments, you will receive your funds via BACS transfer along with electronic statements/invoices as usual. If you usually receive paper statements, these are highly likely to be delayed. Please contact the office if you would like to receive electronic statements.
What Happens If My Tenants Can’t Pay?
It is highly likely that tenants who are unable to work due to isolation or their employer restricting business will see their income decrease. We have asked that tenants who experience financial hardship contact the office so we can try and explore solutions.
The Government has announced the ability to take a ‘holiday’ from your buy to let mortgages. Regardless of whether or not your tenant has financial issues at this time, you may wish to explore this option. Think of it as financial stockpiling. You should speak to your mortgage provider or financial advisor to make sure you are aware of the financial implications of this. This is a ‘holiday’ from payments and the money must be paid off in the future.
If your tenant cannot afford to pay, we have encouraged them to pay whatever they can, no matter how small an amount. This will ensure that their arrears are kept to a minimum. These arrears are not wiped off and remain payable in the future. A payment plan would need to be agreed between all parties.
I’m sure most landlords would agree that if the tenants they have in their property have been reliable, trustworthy and great to deal with this far, then it is worth working together to ensure we keep them in their homes long after coronavirus has died down.
I’ve Heard We Can No Longer Evict Tenants
The Government has today announced a ban on Section 21 Evictions for three months. This is very new legislation and the finer points have not been released however early wording indicates that this will apply to all NEW eviction notices. If we are currently working to reclaim your property from the tenants, it is our understanding that this will continue. Clarification on. This matter is being sought.
I Might Struggle Financially
If you would like advice on mortgages or financial planning please do not hesitate to contact the office. We work with local Mortgage Brokers with a massive wealth of knowledge and experience who may be able to use this as an opportunity to save you money on your current deals. Interest rates are standing at 0.25% which means it is not a bad time for investments.
My Property Is Currently On The Market, What Should I Do?
This needs to be discussed on a case by case basis. As above, interest rates are very low and this means that buying at this time is not a bad idea. Having said that, we know from historical trends that the property industry is affected by global events.
We are still working to market properties and still holding viewings. If this ceases to be the case, we will let you know. If you have concerns, please contact the office.
Lastly, I will aim to update this information as we proceed through this crazy situation and will get back to individual enquiries as soon as possible but from me to you, from one concerned business owner to undoubtedly concerned tenants, landlords, vendors and buyers, we will get through this if we do what we do best in North Yorkshire, “put kettle on and wait for all this mess to blow over”.