NFDC Calls for Private Landlord Support to End Homelessness

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The New Forest District Council (NFDC) is calling for support from private landlords to help prevent homelessness.

Rough sleeping in England has risen for the seventh consecutive year according to official figures. Because of this, NFDC is calling for private buy to let landlords to aid in the effort to reduce homelessness. NFDC is hoping that private landlords will work with them by joining the ‘Private Sector Lease Scheme’ as part of the council’s work under the Homelessness Reduction Act.

There are already 117 properties in the scheme. However, the council is hoping to attract far more buy to let investors with the hope that the homes can be rented out to vulnerable people in the district who are desperate for accommodation.

The council believes that the scheme could also benefit landlords as well as those who need the accommodation. Any landlords who join the scheme will receive a fixed term lease over a number of years as well as a guaranteed monthly rental income for the entire of the lease period. This includes any time when the property is vacant while all repairs are carried out by the council’s maintenance team.

NFDC portfolio holder for housing, Councillor Jill Cleary, said: ‘Becoming homeless is a devastating thing to happen. And it is not just the stereotype of rough-sleepers this national issue affects; losing your home could happen to anyone, often through no fault of their own. We work to help anyone who doesn’t have a roof over their head.’

She added: ‘We are working hard to meet the requirements of the new Homelessness Reduction Act head-on and in its first few months helped 63 households who were facing the imminent loss of their homes to secure alternative accommodation and avoid homelessness. But we can’t do this alone. We need more properties and believe what we offer landlords who join the private sector lease scheme is hassle-free with many mutual benefits.’

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