flatfair launches online tool Resolve to help landlords cope with COVID-19 rent arrears

Payment technology company flatfair has become the latest in a long list of FinTech ventures looking to help businesses weather the pandemic.

It has launched Resolve, a free online tool for landlords to propose and agree on rent payment plans for coronavirus rent arrears.

This comes on the back of two million renters telling charity Shelter that losing their job will leave them unable to pay rent.

“All landlords should look to find out if their tenant is in financial difficulty and is genuinely unable to pay the rent,” said Franz Doerr, CEO and founder of flatfair. “Make sure you try and help those that need help and educate those that don’t. Validate the situation of your tenant; it could be better than they are suggesting. Equally, it could be worse. Full understanding of the facts will lead to a better result for all concerned.

“But being able to do this clearly, transparently and quickly may be tough for many buy-to-let landlords. Broken lines of communication and a lack of understanding can lead to rifts that won’t mend easily.

“That’s why we launched Resolve, an online platform that allows landlords to ask tenants to submit proof of financial distress – such as a redundancy letter – which the landlord can then review and suggest a payment plan. Crucially, all the correspondence and documentation is recorded online on the portal meaning there is a clear record that these discussions have happened. This gives both landlord and tenant certainty that they have followed all the right steps.

“This will be critical for landlords who have to make the tough decision to evict their tenant once the pandemic is over. Relying on phone calls or texts or emails will likely lead to a disjointed chain of correspondence that may be disputed in court later down the line.”

Other companies to have launched initiatives include Judopay, which has joined the #KeepBritainMoving initiative to help support UK SMEs during the coronavirus crisis; PayFit launching new tools to enable businesses to calculate furlough and sick pay amidst the coronavirus pandemic; and KYND offering free cyber risks reports to businesses.

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