I know I’ve been a pretentious little shitbag about DSS tenants lately, but I swear, I’m also very well aware of the blooming fruit DSS tenants can bring to the yard.
Yeah, sure, DSS tenants notoriously have a bad rap for carrying bad credit and being lousy, reckless tenants. But I assure you, there’s a bad bunch in every group, so let me take a little time out to explain why taking on DSS tenants can make life a little bit sweeter for landlords…
1) DSS tenants are free
Letting agents will freshly create you a second anal-passage by charging you up to 12% of your annual rent to find you a tenant (excluding full-management service).
12 per cent accounts for a huge chunk of change. Hell, a lot of the times they’ll just offer you a DSS tenant anyways. And let’s be honest, if you’re going to pay 12% to a letting agent, you should expect more than a DSS tenant.
It doesn’t even make sense for letting agents to charge a landlord for a DSS tenant because ANY private landlord can put a BTL ad on Gumtree advertising they allow DSS tenants and they’ll get bombarded with enquiries. Additionally, it might be worth getting in touch with your local Social housing office and inform them you’re a landlord willing to home DSS tenants. Some local authorities will give your details out to DSS tenants looking for accommodation and they will then contact you. I’m told the process works differently for each council, however.
Back in the day, when I didn’t know the difference between a Landlord and a tenant, I actually paid a letting agent 1k to find me a tenant. They ended up finding a DSS tenant. I didn’t even know what a DSS tenant was, all I knew was that I was going to get my rent, and that seemed to rest well with me. The tenant turned out to be decent, but in retrospect, I’m annoyed that they charged me 1k for a tenant that I could have got for free had I of known how the system works.
2) Supply and demand
A lot of Landlords and Letting Agents refuse to deal with DSS tenants, but that means a higher rent is achievable as demand is greater than supply.
3) Reliable income
In the current economic crisis, people are losing their jobs left, right and centre. Even professional city-workers are finding P45’s in their letterbox and having to downgrade to Burton suits. Consequently, Landlords are suddenly finding that their working-professional tenants who have been reliable for years are suddenly falling into arrears.
The good thing about DSS tenants is that their income source is generally reliable because it comes direct from the government. That seems to be more reliable than a salary at the moment.
4) Payment goes straight to the landlord
Providing your local council does make direct payments to the tenant (some don’t), it’s pretty reassuring knowing that they’re responsible and in control of ensuring rent goes into your account each month.
I currently have a long-term DSS tenant, and everything ticks along nicely. Every 30 days I get a receipt through the mail, and money goes directly into my account- that makes life extremely easy.
My point being, payment is just a little more assuring with DSS tenants because the council can’t exactly leg it.
5) Landlords With DSS Tenants Could Receive a Grant Of £3,500 To Make Their Property More Energy Efficient
“Warm Front” is a government-funded scheme which provides grants to make a home warmer, healthier and more energy-efficient.
The grant provides energy-efficiency advice and a package of insulation and heating improvements tailored to each property up to the value of £3,500. Some homes that need oil central heating may receive a grant of up to £6,000.
Warm Front Grants are for people who own their home or rent it from a private landlord AND are on certain benefits. One of the benefits listed is “Housing Benefit”, which is why this is particularly useful for landlords with DSS tenants.
Go here for more details, Landlords With DSS Tenants Could Receive a Grant Of £3,500 To Make Their Property More Energy Efficient
Just for the record, by no means am I encouraging anyone to take on DSS tenants, nor am I saying that DSS tenants are peaches and cream, because in some cases, that can be far from the truth. I’m simply saying that there are advantages of having DSS tenants, you get me?
Disclaimer: I'm just a landlord blogger; I'm 100% not qualified to give legal or financial advice. I'm a doofus. Any information I share is my unqualified opinion, and should never be construed as professional legal or financial advice. You should definitely get advice from a qualified professional for any legal or financial matters. For more information, please read my full disclaimer.