Scotland Extends Rent Irritation Moratorium

The Scottish government has announced that it will be extending its rent irritation moratorium for a further six months, until the end of September.

The regulation, which has been used extensively by the hospitality industry, shares similarities with England and Wales’ lease forfeiture moratorium active, which prevents landlords from repossessing properties during the pandemic.

In comparison, England and Wales’ moratorium has been extended by three months, until the end of June.

UKHospitality Scotland Executive Director Willie Macleod said: “This is a helpful and pragmatic move by the Scottish Government. After the moratorium was extended in England and Wales, it was absolutely right that Scotland followed suit. We are grateful that it has gone even further and been extended for an additional six months.

“As with the rest of the UK, rent debt for Scottish hospitality businesses has spiralled to frightening levels. It has become a huge burden that threatens the immediate survival and the chances of growth for businesses. Extending the moratorium was necessary to give businesses breathing room and stay alive for the forthcoming reopening.

“This is only a stay of execution, though. The UK Government’s call for evidence must find an equitable solution that brings landlords to the table and shares out this burden fairly – and it must consider measures that also apply in Scotland. This burden is the result of a once-in-a-lifetime crisis and hospitality cannot be expected to shoulder it alone.”