Written submission to the Infrastructure and Capital investment Committee

Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Bill
Written submission to the Infrastructure and Capital investment Committee

While some aspects of this bill are welcome the removal of the no fault The ‘no-fault’ ground for repossession will be detrimental to short term lets in Edinburgh, the Edinburgh Festival and investment in Edinburgh.

By allowing tenants to remain in a property at the end of a tenancy if they wish to will mean that landlords that rent out their properties for the Edinburgh festival will not be able to confirm bookings in advance as they will not know if their tenants will want to stay on. A landlord will not be able to form a contract with short term guests until a month or 2 before the tenancy ends and most guests want to book months or a year in advance.

Performers that visit Edinburgh during the festival rely on student accommodation and would not be able to afford hotels or more up market apartments. No suitable accommodation will be available for them if this bill goes ahead. This will mean a loss of revenue for the city and mean that it will be too costly for performers to visit. Short term letting agencies also rely on this business and this will be detrimental to their business.

Landlords rely on the income from the Edinburgh Festival and summer rentals and without this income they will probably decide to change to short term lets throughout the year, this will mean less properties available for long term rent. Many investors buy HMO properties for student lets and other lets, this bill will put off new investors to the city.

It seems unfair for a cap on rent based on area, how can you average rents, for example 2 flats in the same stairwell would be capped at the same rate when 1 flat may have £100K worth of furniture, period features, brand new kitchen, ground floor with views of the castle and another flat in the same stair may be a damp lower basement conversion that has not been developed and has old furniture, these 2 flats would be deemed to have the same rent.

This bill is taking away basic rights for property owners and the The ‘no-fault’ ground for repossession should not be removed and no cap on rent based on area should be applied.

Alison Rogers
November 2015