Property Partner announces shuttering of dividends and property sales amid market turmoil

By Oliver Smith on Tuesday 31 March 2020

Savings and Investment

“We continue to believe in the long term strength, stability and attraction of UK residential property assets," CEO Warren Bath told investors.

Property Partner announces shuttering of dividends and property sales amid market turmoil
Image source: Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels.

Just seven months after incoming CEO Warren Bath launched an ambitious turnaround plan for property marketplace Property Partner, yesterday Bath announced a new package of measures to protect its investors amid market turmoil.

For the next three months all dividends and property sale processes will be suspended, with income accumulating in each property’s bank balance 

On the residential side of Property Partner’s portfolio Bath wrote to investors informing them that: “ based on the feedback we already have, there will be substantial rent arrears.”

Part of the challenge is the government’s response to coronavirus, requiring landlords to provide rent holidays and protecting tenants from eviction.

The CEO added that Property Partner is currently seeking a three-month mortgage payment holiday for these properties.

On the student accommodation side of the portfolio Bath warned the situation is “potentially worse”, however Property Partner has already agreed a six-month mortgage holiday with its student accommodation lender.

Since 18 March Property Partner has seen average share prices fall a further five per cent on its resale market, with a steep decline in trading volumes. The market is due to reopen now on 6 April.

“All asset classes in the economy are under severe pressure,” wrote Bath in his letter to investors.

“Equity markets are volatile and have fallen approximately 30 per cent, and dividends from public companies are being heavily reduced or cancelled. 

“We continue to believe in the long term strength, stability and attraction of UK residential property assets. Our focus is on the management of our existing portfolio, with the potential to recommence new acquisitions when conditions allow.”

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Property Partner