The government is committed to replacing the complex system of benefits with one single payment – The Universal Credit. The housing element of the Universal Credit will be paid to tenants to cover their accommodation costs. The Residential Landlords Association is campaigning to have this element paid directly to landlords rather then to the tenants. The problem is that sometimes the tenant uses it to cover other outgoings or debts and does not pass it on, leaving the landlord out of pocket and possibly unable to pay their bills such as landlord insurance.

According to the RLA many potential landlords are deterred from entering this sector of the market because of worries abut the security of rent payments and other costs such as rented house insurance. If potential landlords had a guarantee that their rents would come through regularly they would be far happier about it. Housing Associations are already in this position because they receive their income direct rather than from the tenant.

What are your thoughts on landlords receiving rent directly rather than via the tenant? If landlords received money direct would it lead them to provide a improved standard of accommodation as the rent is guaranteed or would taking the property choice away from tenants decrease competition and therefore the state of some property rented to benefit tenants?