Ajay Jagota

Member Article

2012 was positive for landlords. What about 2013?

One of the North East’s leading lettings agents has hailed 2012 as “positive for property” but has warned his the government and the industry against complacency in 2013.

In his review of the year in the rental sector, Ajay Jagota of KIS Lettings, believes rising demand for rented homes and research showing property becoming a more profitable investment than a pension to be a cause for Christmas optimism.

But Ajay, whose company manage properties for some 700 landlords across the North East from branches in Sunderland, North Tyneside and South Tyneside has also voiced concerns of potential consequences for landlords, lettings agents and the government alike if steps aren’t taken to address challenges the industry faces.

Ajay said: “On the whole, landlords and agents can be more than satisfied with 2012. Demand for good quality rented accommodation has never been so high and research out just this week showed investing in property to be a better bet than investing in a pension.

“2012 also saw our industry start to get serious about tackling the rogue landlords who shame us all and to take the action we so desperately need to protect our tenants and protect our reputation.

“Just this week the Mayor of London echoed my calls for a voluntary accreditation scheme for landlords and it’s important that this issue remains on the agenda.

“That doesn’t mean that we haven’t faced challenges and that there aren’t more challenges ahead. The ongoing economic downturn means rent arrears have apparently never been so high, which can be devastating for landlords, particularly those operating alone, and the bleak economic outlook means this situation may not improve any time soon.

“More worryingly are the upcoming changes to housing benefits, where benefits will be paid to tenants instead of direct to landlords which are a huge concern for the industry.

“As many of us have warned, landlords in trial areas have seen tenants just not paying . If that pattern is repeated across the board the results could be catastrophic – especially for small scale or inexperienced landlords without experienced back-up behind them.

“2012 was positive for property. The big challenge for landlords, letting agents and government alike is making sure that in 12 months time we’re saying the same thing about 2013”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ajay Jagota .

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