Responding to the findings from the National Housing Federation* (NHF) about the cost of housing benefit in the UK, Richard Lambert, Chief Executive Officer at the National Landlords Association (NLA), said:
“Housing benefit is not a subsidy to landlords; it’s a support for tenants to ensure they can pay for their housing. However, the proportion of landlords who let to tenants in receipt of housing benefit has halved over the last five years as benefit levels have not kept up with rents.
“The NHF is clearly still reeling from the news that its members have been ordered by government to reduce spending over the next four years, so it comes as no surprise that they are looking to shift the emphasis and point the finger elsewhere.
“The private rented sector has grown as the market responds to the increasing demand for homes, particularly from a growing proportion of tenants whom the social sector and housing associations simply are not able to support in the current circumstances.
“The private rented sector plays a significant role in providing much-needed homes for tenants so there seems no real benefit in the NHF taking a cheap shot at landlords. What we should all be talking about is the failure of successive governments to adequately allocate its housing budget and to incentivise the building of new homes. In the long term, that would be the best use of taxpayers’ money”.