Will the government support tenants or landlords?

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As the Guardian has noted:

Recent polling by the Resolution Foundation found 13% of renters said they were behind with payments to their landlords, compared with about 4% before the pandemic, according to figures from the English housing survey.

But the campaign group Generation Rent said if rates of homelessness followed the same trend, 45,000 households could be made homeless after being evicted from a private tenancy for rent arrears, up from about 15,000 in 2019.

And this is before furlough ends.

It will get very much worse.

But what landlords will soon learn us that when there are no tenants their priorities have remarkably little value. Evictions work when there are new tenants who can pay who are queueing for property. But such tenants  will be few and far between soon. Then the financial crisis really begins.

But that will be little comfort to those evicted who will then be homeless.

The government could solve this, of course. It could provide statutory deferral periods. And mandatory rent cuts.

But will it?  I very much doubt it. Expect instead that it will start renting private landlord property to rehouse those evicted by private landlords as a way of keeping private landlord rents high. After all, landlords are at the heart of this government’s concerns.