Last week I was reminded that many people involved in the property industry don’t really know what they are doing and often provide incorrect information to landlords and property investors.
I spoke to a letting agent and was rather surprised to hear that they had completely the wrong understanding about Local Housing Authority (LHA) tenants and problems associated with renting to LHA tenants.
The letting agent said, in no uncertain terms that their landlords do not accept LHA tenants, and she unexplained the reasons why. The slight problem with this is that information she shared with me was actually incorrect.
There are some common myths regarding letting your property to LHA tenants. In this blog I would like to clarify the situation
The most common myth is that the rent is always paid direct to the tenant who then has to pass it on to the landlord and that rent can only go to the landlord once the tenant is 8 weeks in arrears.
Now let’s be honest, this would be a big disadvantage of renting to LHA tenants if it were true. But it isn’t. You can write to the local council and get them to make payments direct to you instead of to the tenant without having to wait 8 weeks.
The second myth is that if the tenant makes a fraudulent claim for benefits, which if the rent has been paid direct to the landlord, then the council can claw back the rent from the landlord. Again this is incorrect however councils will try to do this even though it is not legal.
When checking these myths out, I found that huge number of people believe these myths to be true including many from all people who work in the LHA departments of local councils.
This just goes to show that when you seek advice, you need to make sure that the people you ask really know what they’re talking about. Because investing in property is such a popular topic in the UK many people are all too happy to share their advice with you, which often is more of an opinion, with no actual experience to back it up.