Financial stress of Covid-19 can be lessened through fairness and transparency
People queuing to view apartments: It is understood the Government will announce a temporary ban on evictions for an initial period of three months and possibly the introduction of a rent freeze. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien
Landlords and tenants will be feeling financial stress right now, and it is important that both parties recognise this and interact in a fair and transparent manner. Sean O’Neill, director at real estate adviser TWM, believes a strong landlord and tenant relationship can be built now and endure beyond if both parties are respectful of each other’s position.
What are the first steps landlords and tenants should take?
Landlords: Assess your tenant’s ability to pay and engage with your bank. For private residential landlords with mortgages in place, flexibility is more short term (most likely assessed on a month-to-month basis) than for commercial-type landlords, given the reduced security they have from tenants on short-term tenancies.
What residential landlords can do will also very much depend on Government policy and bank/funder support. Following a meeting last week between representatives of the banks, the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland (BPFI) and Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe, the main banks are to introduce a range of measures to help those affected by the current situation.
These measures include a payment break of up to three months and the deferment of court proceedings. The non-bank lenders and credit servicing companies have also agreed to these measures. To avail of the payment break, you need to make contact with your bank or loan servicing company.