Landlords

Landlords call for Bill that outlaws ‘no fault evictions’

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A joint statement by four organisations representing over 100,000 landlords said the sector had faced five years of uncertainty over plans to end Section 21 repossessions and called for the issue to be brought to a conclusion as soon as possible

Landlords have called on the next government to urgently pass legislation previously proposed by the Conservatives which would outlaw so-called “no fault” evictions and support tenants’ rights.

A joint statement by four organisations representing over 100,000 landlords said the sector had faced five years of uncertainty over plans to end Section 21 repossessions and called for the issue to be brought to a conclusion as soon as possible.

The Renters (Reform) Bill would have also imposed new obligations on landlords aimed at ending discrimination against those on low incomes.

The Bill, which was described by homelessness charity Shelter as a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” to address problems facing renters, had reached its second reading in the House of Lords when the General Election was called and Parliament was dissolved.

The Bill had received cross-party support and Labour suggested it would “happily” pass the legislation in the final days of the last Parliament, but it was not prioritised by ministers.

The Government had previously indicated it would delay implementation of the ban on Section 21 repossessions until the courts were assessed to have the capacity to deal with new cases, prompting accusations that ministers have abandoned renters and conceded to “pro-landlord Conservative MPs”.

In the joint statement, the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA), Grainger PLC, the British Property Federation (BPF) and Leaders Romans Group said: Renters, landlords and letting agents have faced five years of uncertainty over plans to end Section 21 ‘no fault’ repossessions.

With all the main parties’ manifestos committed to delivering rental reform, it is time to bring the issue to a conclusion. Only this approach will enable the sector to look forward and unlock the investment in new housing that renters desperately need and deserve, they said.

The Renters (Reform) Bill to end Section 21 was well on its way through Parliament before the election with broad support, and Labour has said it could have ‘happily’ agreed it in the ‘wash up’ period, they said.

They added: The best way for the next government to achieve their objectives would be to resurrect this Bill as a matter of urgency.

After Rishi Sunak called the General Election on May 22, Labour’s shadow housing minister, Matthew Pennycook, told Sky News that his party would have supported the Renters (Reform) Bill becoming law.

He added: The Bill is not perfect, we wanted to see it strengthened, but renters are so desperately in need of greater rights and protections we will see it through.

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