The National Landlords Association (NLA) and the Residential Landlords Association (RLA),two of the largest landlord organisations in England and Wales, have announced plans to merge in order to deliver a more robust voice in the private rented sector.
The NLA gives landlords expert advice and guidance on problems such as loss of rental income and dealing with problem tenants.
They lobby at national governmental level to influence legislation and ensure that landlords and their assets are fairly treated. The NLA also connects single property landlords with large multi-site landlords to share experiences and drive future development.
The benefits of full membership of the NLA include unlimited access to their expert Telephone Advice Line and discounted rates for their landlord development courses, covering topics such as mastering the planning process, portable appliance testing (PAT) and financial advice on deposits, damages and disputes.
Additional benefits include a subscription to UK Landlord, the premier magazine for landlords, and free Tax Investigation Insurance. The NLA also organises regional meetings across the UK where members can listen to guest speakers and engage in question and answer sessions.
The RLA provides broadly similar information and advice to the NLA. Expertise, support and tools are available to improve the rented sector by ensuring that the membership community is informed, better educated and and more strongly supported.
The organisation provides a wide range of documents and guides for matters such as tenancy agreements, fire safety and tenant reponsibilities, and services such as tenant credit checks and energy efficiency funding. The RLA also provides training on topics such as PAT testing, capital gains tax and complete fire safety.
The RLA also conducts and commissions research to inform their campaigning work for clear, practical and workable legislation, asking the government to reduce the regulatory burden on their membership of responsible and professional landlords.
The new organisation, the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA), will have a membership of more than 80,000 landlords who manage an estimated half-a-million properties, around 10% of the private rented sector.
The planned merger has the approval of the existing boards of both organisations at a time when landlords face an unprecedented challenge as regards compliance through legislative change.
The NRLA will serve landlords in England and Wales and will have a regional structure. For the time being, both the RLA and NLA will continue to operate independently although there will be an increasing level of coordination.
Subject to initial approval at a general meeting of members on Tuesday 17 September 2019, the new organisation intends to launch officially on 1 January 2020.
The two chairs, Alan Ward of the RLA and Adrian Jeakings of the NLA, have said in a joint statement that following more than 20 years of friendly competition, the time has come to create one organisation to represent and campaign for landlords.
They believe that with so much work being duplicated, there will be major benefits for their landlord members. Furthermore, they will be able to speak with one voice to both national and local government regarding the importance of supporting the majority of landlords who provide decent homes for rent which the UK desperately needs.