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BLOG: When landlords talk to their MPs, politicians listen

whitehall parliament landlords

The anticipation surrounding the Renters (Reform) Bill has remained a constant topic recently, with discussions over the timing of the abolition of Section 21 constantly fluctuating.

In this whirlwind of uncertainty, one beacon of hope emerges: the power of community advocacy.

Reflecting on my experiences, I wanted to share my view that engaging with your local MP can yield tangible results in helping to shape policy outcomes.

In January 2023, fuelled by a sense of urgency stemming from conversations with landlords evicting to exit the rental market, I took it upon myself to drive conversations with my local MP for Chipping Barnet, Theresa Villiers (main picture).

Upon agreeing to meet, our discussions focused on the pressing rental stock crisis exacerbated by factors such as the surge in interest rates following Liz Truss's tenure, the introduction of Section 24, and court delays.


Landlords were already grappling with concerns about the potential abolition of Section 21 while simultaneously struggling to regain possession of their properties.

At Landlord Action, the last 12 months have seen an unprecedented number of landlords serving Section 21 notices.

While tenant arrears and antisocial behaviour remain common reasons, the prevailing trend increasingly sees landlords opting to sell their properties.

The impending ban on Section 21 evictions and the introduction of periodic tenancies have sparked concerns among landlords.

The fear of never regaining possession prompts smaller landlords to contemplate exiting the market, potentially impacting good tenants who may face eviction due to increasing rents.

Central to my discussions with MP Villiers was the pressing issue of court delays plaguing the eviction process.

King's Speech

Despite multiple meetings, it became apparent that addressing this systemic challenge would require significant effort. However, our dialogue successfully brought the issue of court delays into the spotlight, even gaining attention in discussions following the King's speech.

Villiers stands among nearly 50 Conservative backbenchers advocating for amendments to the Renters Reform Bill, emphasising the urgent need for court reforms to restore landlords' confidence in regaining possession of their properties – and they appear to making progress after news today that Michael Gove has been listening to the argument that unless the Renters (Reform) Bill is workable, a further landlord exodus will take place, which would be bad news for renters in the long term. 

In 2023, there were 31,545 accelerated Section 21 claims, the highest figure since 2016.  

This underscores the impending challenges. When Section 21 is no more, this number will inevitably translate into Section 8 hearings, exacerbating an already overburdened system.


With 29,173 Section 8 claims also recorded in the same year, the reality of prolonged court battles becomes starkly apparent. As we prepare for the inevitable shift from Section 21 to solely relying on Section 8 to evict, ensuring the practical viability of these new grounds for eviction is paramount. This entails allocating significant resources for an increased number of judges, bailiffs, and court staff, a formidable task

Landlords facing antisocial behaviour in their properties used to rely on Section 21 as a lifeline.

While the Renters Reform Bill aims to bolster tenant security and raise property standards, it is imperative to strike a delicate balance that safeguards the interests of responsible landlords.

Only through collective efforts can we navigate the complexities ahead and build a rental system that balances the needs of tenants and landlords alike.

There are also positive changes though. Landlord redress, akin to landlord registration, should be embraced by responsible landlords. As an industry, we yearn for recognition.

Being a landlord is a profession and should be viewed as such, and supporting landlord education is paramount. Accreditation, as seen in Rent Smart Wales, can serve as a model for enhancing professionalism in property management.  

The challenge, of course, lies in addressing landlords who operate underground and resist professionalisation.


Amidst the uncertainty looming over the rental landscape, one thing remains clear: a sense of urgency is paramount to prevent a cascading effect of landlord panic and unintended consequences for tenants.

Government and stakeholders must confront the practical realities of implementation of all these changes and advocate for solutions that foster a fair and sustainable rental market.

While we at Landlord Action witness first-hand the challenges of the current system and potential flaws in future plans, the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) is at the forefront of advocating for landlords, striving to secure the best possible deal in these challenging times.

While we anticipate updates on the Renters (Reform) Bill and monitor the broader political landscape, my ongoing commitment to engaging with my local MP convinces me that the crux lies in proactive involvement, educating decision-makers, and amplifying the voices of landlords.

Only through collective efforts can we navigate the complexities ahead and build a rental system that balances the needs of tenants and landlords alike.


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