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By Bay Estate Agents
Welcome relief for tenants and landlords as the Welsh Government introduces the Tenant Saver Loan Scheme to support those in genuine need because of the impact of Coronavirus.
Today, 11 August 2020, the Welsh Government announced the introduction of their new Tenant Saver Loan Scheme, which will be made available from the beginning of September to support those most affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Providing financial support, this loan scheme is designed to help those in the private rented sector who are experiencing rent arrears since 1 March 2020, as a direct result of COVID-19.
The Welsh Government are still finalising the details, but ARLA Propertymark understands that the scheme will work by the tenant applying for the loan with support from the landlord . Applicants will be required to provide evidence that they can afford the scheme and have the ability to re-pay. Once approved, the funds are transferred directly to either the landlord or letting agent. The loans will be charged at an interest rate of 1 per cent APR paid over a period of up to five years. There is no cap set on the amount a tenant can borrow.
The scheme will be administered by Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) and delivered through credit unions who will conduct checks to audit applications, using, for example, tenancy agreements and personal identification.
Whilst tenants cannot be forced to apply for the support, the Welsh Government expect one-off applications to be made subject to later developments concerning the spread of the virus, the impact on employment, and the existing furlough scheme.
A press release from the Welsh Government says that the new Tenant Saver Loan Scheme will provide an affordable way to cover rent arrears, or future months’ rent, reducing the risk of eviction and homelessness. These loans will be paid directly to landlords and are available for tenants who were not in significant rent arrears prior to 1 March this year.
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