Landlords see rental market shrinking, blame rent restrictions – survey

… and majority considering eviction for tenants in arrears

The majority of landlords surveyed by Lisbon Landlords Association (ALP) expect the rental market to shrink this year, and have a “feeling that there will be fewer properties available,” says ALP’s report, released today.

“In addition to a feeling that default will increase, there is a feeling that there will be fewer properties available for rent among landlords surveyed (response expressed by 53% of the landlords who participated in this sixth edition of the ALP Barometer),” reads the ALP’s sixth annual Barometer.

According to the results, 40% of respondents plan not to change the way they practice renting properties, while “a third indicate that this year they will only enter into new leases with the minimum duration and non-renewable.”

Among factors that have most disturbed the confidence of landlords this year are the “imposition of the standard brake on increases” – a move taken by the government due to the cost-of-living crisis – and “the unjustified maintenance of the freeze on pre-1990 rents, says the report.

The former was the measure most pointed out as hurting landlord confidence the most (54% responded this way), while 50% cited the “unjustified maintenance of the freeze on pre-1990 rents”.

Half the landlords surveyed also claim to have suffered acts of vandalism in their properties, with 83.4% “unable to be compensated for the damage caused by their tenants”.

Among the most common phenomena recorded were litter and dirt (80.5%) or damage to walls (74.4%) or surfaces (67.7%).

Just under one fifth of landlords also complained of being the target of harassment and that it is “a risky profession in terms of the security of the property – but also of one’s own physical integrity.

“In-person threats represent the largest share of responses (40%), followed by telephone threats (36.5%) and written threats (33%),” the report reads. “A 16.7% proportion have already been the target of harassment by tenants in the street or public spaces.”

The Barometer gathered 330 responses between November 29 and December 9, through an anonymous questionnaire shared with ALP members and followers on Facebook and Linkedin pages.

The vast majority of participants (92.4%) own properties placed on the traditional rental market;56% have properties with frozen rents from pre-1990 contracts.

More than half (56%) own up to five urban properties, while 19% of responses came from owners who hold between six -10 properties on the rental market.

The same ALP Barometer found that “most landlords” are considering eviction for tenants with rent payments in arrears.