Evaluation

accommodation

How can landlords be encouraged to rent to people who receive benefits?

Project Details

Last updated:

August 4, 2022

Status

Completed

Contact

hello@homelessnessimpact.org

Much research on homelessness focuses primarily on individuals experiencing homelessness, but if we are to truly improve their housing options we must also look to those who hold the keys to those homes: landlords.

By undertaking this experiment, we have attempted to shift this paradigm by exploring ways to nudge landlords to let their properties to people who are at risk of homelessness.

Findings

  • Pre-tenancy training and budget planners might be less effective that we thought
  • Both interventions had small to moderate impacts on perceptions of effective communications
  • Offering information about paying Universal Credit directly to the landlord made no substantial difference to landlords' willingness to rent

How we went about it

Working alongside the Behavioural Insights Team and the National Residential Landlords Association we undertook two online experiments to test whether disclosing additional information about a tenant increases the willingness of landlords to continue with the application of someone receiving Universal Credit.

Key recommendations

  • Offer Universal Credit recipients a choice of having the housing benefit portion of their payment transferred directly to their landlord
  • Combine financial incentives and behavioural interventions
  • Ensure Local Housing Authorities rates track market rents
  • Future research should collaborate with Local Authorities to estimate ‘cost per tenancy’ for different programmes and incentives

Team

Eva Kolker, The Behavioural Insights Team
ourdes Valencia-Torres, The Behavioural Insights Team
Filip Murar, The Behavioural Insights Team
James Farrington, The Behavioural Insights Team

Project Details

Last updated:

August 4, 2022

Status

Completed

Funded by

Contact

hello@homelessnessimpact.org

How can landlords be encouraged to rent to people who receive benefits?

Topic
Accommodation
project dates
April 2021
project leads
hello@homelessnessimpact.org
How can landlords be encouraged to rent to people who receive benefits?
Much research on homelessness focuses primarily on individuals experiencing homelessness, but if we are to truly improve their housing options we must also look to those who hold the keys to those homes: landlords. By undertaking this experiment, we have attempted to shift this paradigm by exploring ways to nudge landlords to let their properties to people who are at risk of homelessness. Working alongside the Behavioral Insights Team and the National Residential Landlords Association we undertook two online experiments to test whether disclosing additional information about a tenant increases the willingness of landlords to continue with the application of someone receiving Universal Credit.
The Behavioural Insights Team
National Residential Landlords Association
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