GPRLA Newsletter February 2018
We are aware your Council have not contacted you with a newsletter for some time. This does not mean we have been idle. On the contrary things are ticking away so we thought you should be updated. Subjects are…Open meeting in March, Population Management Law, Income Support from Social Security, GPRLA website, The work of GPRLA, Data Protection GDPR, Some statistics.
There is a forthcoming GPRLA Open Meeting planned for 7pm on Wednesday 7th March at the Yacht Club, Castle Emplacement, so please save the date in your diaries. A representative of Guernsey Electricity will be introducing a new concept in electric central heating.
A reminder will follow nearer the time.
Population Management Law
We have been waiting for some definite policies from Population Management to help us as landlords. The Population Management Law Guernsey 2016 which has replaced the old Guernsey Housing Law is now explained in some detail on the gov.gg website.
Here is a link to the general Population Management area https://www.gov.gg/populationmanagement
and a link to an area for landlords https://www.gov.gg/pmlandlord . We hope these help.
For any questions it is best to contact the States Population Management Team.
Income Support from Social Security
We recently received a letter from Social Security about the changes to Supplementary Benefit, which is to be combined with Rent Rebate, starting in July 2018 as a replacement benefit called Income Support. This may affect you as a landlord if your tenant asks you questions or for advice on the subject. Clearly they need to be asking Social Security rather than the landlord. However Social Security are planning short presentations on the subject, likely to be on a Tuesday or Thursday morning in April, and will contact us again when dates are finalised. We will post the information on the GPRLA website when we receive it. If you would like us to send you the details in an email please let us know to firstname.lastname@example.org .
We are aware some of our members never visit the website, www.guernseylandlords.gg . The website does hold useful information including posted relevant news articles and your personal details which you gave us when joining. You can amend these by logging into the website secure members area. This area also contains details of offers to our members, e.g. a percentage off property insurance, cleaning services, various appliances at Guernsey Gas showrooms (not only gas ones) etc.
Also the Guide to Letting can be accessed and downloaded from various pages of the website, and it contains updated wording where any changes are needed. So it is more up-to-date than the printed booklet. This is because it is expensive to run reprints and we still have several boxes of the April 2013 version. The website version is currently dated November 2017 and shows our current website and email address, as well as mention of Population Management.
The work of our association
Jeff has done some media interviews on relevant subjects since the AGM, and in April will be giving a talk to Citizens Advice Guernsey advisors on the work of GPRLA. He and Denis answer requests for advice and help with mediation where there are landlord/tenant disputes. This is important work and resolves issues in a better way than cumbersome legislation. Your Council are also present at open meetings where landlords can advise and support each other. Also the website tries to help tenants as well as ourselves and other landlords, and they are encouraged to leave us a message with their rental needs.
Data Protection (GDPR)
And finally here are some statistics you might find interesting.
Here is a breakdown of mediations and advice given by GPRLA members in 2017
Rent Arrears 2
Return of Deposit 13
Breaking Lease early 5
Absent Landlords 4
Housing Licence 2
Court Procedure 2
General advice Building control \
Fire Regulations \ 7
Not all these issues were the fault of the tenant and the landlord involved was rarely a member of our association. People were generally very grateful for our input.
Numbers of GPRLA members
Currently 190 members, 20 of whom are associates, representing 1050 rental units.
Over 65% pay GPRLA annual subs by standing order or via the website.
Another 22% pay by cash or cheque, and a few use other methods eg BACS.
We would be very grateful if these members could change to S/O or website this June.
We lose a few members each year, mainly due to landlords selling up, but gain slightly more new members so our membership is gradually increasing.
Stats from States of Guernsey Facts & Figures booklet & gov.gg website housing stock bulletin
Over the 5 years ending in 2016 monthly rental prices decreased by 3.1%.
At the end of December 2017 RPIX inflation in Guernsey was 2.5%.
Population 62,542 in 26,904 domestic property units, 94% local 6% open market.
59.7% of the units are owner occupied
9.4% are affordable or supported housing, i.e. types of States Housing = 2529 units
2.8% other tenure types or vacant, apart from…
28.1% which are private rental = 7560 units (3 times that of States Housing)
of which GPRLA members represent about 1050 units, that is 14% of private rentals.
We currently average about 20 to 30 hits a day on the website.
Yours sincerelyMichele Linsell on behalf of GPRLA
GPRLA Membership Secretary and Website Admin