Generation Rent has claimed that ending unfair evictions could reduce homelessness by nine percent and save councils £161 million a year.

By unfair evictions it means banning Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions that follow a tenant complaining about a property or its maintenance, or when a landlord decides to sell a property in order to sell it or re-let it to new tenants at a higher price. Generation Rent says 68,430 households have faced homelessness in this way since April 2018.

Tenants can protect themselves from ‘revenge evictions’ over complaints by reporting the matter to the council both before and after a Section 21 notice is issued, but few do this.

Generation Rent says it wants revenge evictions banned and also make landlords who to sell up compensate their tenants for the cost of moving home.

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Section 21 evictions are a hot political potato at the moment as landlords wait to hear when all kinds of Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions will be banned via the government Autumn White Paper, and what they will be replaced with.

Government data

Generation Rent is basing its evictions claims on MHCLG data that shows out of 755,250 households made homeless or threatened with homelessness between April 2018 and December 2020, 140,950 had been in a private assured shorthold tenancy (19%).

Of these households, 68,430 had faced an unfair eviction – either following a complaint about disrepair or due to their landlord selling or re-letting the property (49% of private rented sector cases and 9% of the total).

Evictions specialist Paul Shamplina of Landlord Action says: “Further to these figures quoted by Generation Rent, our data from the courts shows that at the coal face the possession cases situation is not as severe as they are suggesting,” says Paul Shamplina.

“It is also up for debate what ‘unfair eviction’ means as many landlords use Section 21 notice evictions for good reasons including to remove tenants who have stopped paying their rent but who have not been affected by the pandemic.

“That is why when Section 21 is banned, there needs to be special measures put in place to ensure landlords with legitimate reasons for repossession have a way to achieve that.

“And remember that many of the landlords that the Landlord Action team speak to are often repossessing because they have had enough of the new rules and extra taxation and want to sell up.”

Generation Rent have also published a report recommending the tenancy reforms it would like to see in the White Paper ‘to end unfair evictions and give renters’ greater long-term security in their home’.

16 COMMENTS

  1. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – very few tenants are served S21 without some good reason – usually rent arrears. LLs want good, long term tenants so if you pay your rent on time and look after the property you are extremely unlikely to be served a S21.0

  2. I echo the sentiments of Tricia… Why would a LL evict a perfectly good tenant other than the need to sell or breach of contract (Non-payment etc)

    I have never evicted anyone other than for sale of property, most of which were older properties that would be difficult to meet EPC rules (Easier to sell and buy a modern place) and the legal and estate agents fees are less than the cost of EPC works.

    So govt via EPC regulations are boosting homeless figures.

  3. Surely a landlord has the right to sell his property or even re-let it at the end of a fixed term or even periodic tenancy providing he has served the correct notice. A landlord should be able to achieve maximum return on his investment and often a long term tenant does not want to pay the current market rent of a property. What right do the government have to amend the law that prevents a landlord from re-letting it even selling his investment property if the tenant’s agreement has expired. I am a Lettings agent but still believe the owner of a property has the absolute right to decide what to do with his property if the tenancy has either ended or the tenant is in breach of it.

  4. Banning section 21 WILL save councils money, but not for the reason generation rent think! Most section 21s have been issued by landlords for non payment of rent/ breach of contract etc because section 8 is not fit for purpose. When all those evictions are properly revealed as ‘at fault’, councils will deem those tenants as ‘Intentionally homeless’ and can offload their duty of care forthwith. Generation rent……careful what you wish for 🤣🤣🤣

  5. I also agree with Tricia. Why would a landlord evict a perfectly good tenant other than the need to sell.
    It is not easy to find Good tenants.

  6. Ok.

    1) Section 21
    If we do not have “No Fault” evictions, then there has to be a reason, perhaps “Non Payment of Rent” and this will affect the credit rating of the tenants and make it more difficult for them to find new accommodation. Sounds like they are shooting themselves in the foot. and creating a lot of trouble for everyone else in the process.

    2) Fixed Term Lets
    I have some student tenancies. I need to know that they will vacate at the end of the tenancy so that the group for next year can move in. I need to start marketing in February for new tenants to move in during August. Perhaps we also need an amendment that will clarify matters and say that at the end of the Fixed Term, the tenants MUST vacate, with a quick eviction process that takes less than two weeks.

    3) Medium Term Tenancies for Contractors and Home Movers
    It should not always be in favour of the old style Tenants, there is a dynamic and mobile population that needs to book medium term tenancies for a minimum of 6 months or 1 year for very good reasons, either work contracts or student housing. This needs to be considered. I need to be able to book accommodation for contractors on a rolling 6 month contract with 3 months notice period before the next fixed term kicks in. or let to a new contractor in good time so that they can program their work and accommodating.

    As landlords we are providing accommodation that competes with Hotels, Boarding Houses, Holiday Lets and many people who just want to move out of a very bad situation at home into temporary accommodation whilst a dispute is going on. Life is full and varied, we need to accommodate everyone, not just Generation Rent.

  7. I’ve had to serve a 21 because the tenants owe 4 months rent. The Govt of Scotland and Wales help landlords the English Govt shafts landlords. No thought of our loss of income.
    I’m OUT at the earliest opportunity so one less property to rent.

  8. I only serve a S21 when it is easier and cannot dispute it in Court. Most of the time they relate to breaches of tenancy but may be difficult to prove such as anti social behaviour so S21 is more certain of the outcome and not at discretion of the Judge.
    I have started selling up and so far only disposed of two but am getting rid of the poorer performing properties first.
    I will be selling most when the EPC changes come in as it would just cost too much to convert them to achieve a C. I have been spending money doing them up and have all new boilers, double glazing, roof insulation but would need to do floor insulation or wall insulation or both to achieve a C. This would cost £15-20k even if I could find a contractor to do it, so not economically viable.
    I will just take the money out and invest in something that has no tax disadvantages like property has at the moment and no adverse legislation which means I can take the money when I want to and not have to wait for a tenant to leave once S21 is gone.

  9. I used Sec 21 when my tenant wanted to leave but if she took the initiative she would have ‘made herself homeless’ and this would threaten the benefits she was receiving. She was also in huge arrears. Sec 21 avoided any negative repercussions with either her benefit entitlement or her credit record.
    Her arrears are unlikely to be recovered by me!

  10. Abolishing S21 will result in millions of tenants rendering themselves ‘intentionally homeless’ by their refusal to pay rent.

    Every year these feckless tenants cost LL £9 billion in rent default losses every tax year.

    LL are hardly likely to take on any tenant who via the S8 process will have a proven history of rent default.

    So for most tenants evicted by the S21 process they will no longer be able to game the system to achieve Social Housing.

    One wonders whether once feckless tenants realise that abolishment of S21 no longer will assist their fecklessness that they may change their behaviour.

    However tenants are damned if they do comply with NTQ and if they don’t!!

  11. Because either cause of action will still be deemed by councils as the tenants making themselves ‘intentionally homeless’

    • Of course they can refuse to vacate hut Stoll pay their rent.

      That way they would not be making themselves ‘intentionally homeless’.

      So such tenants hoping to game the system to achieve social housing will need to pay the rent until evicted or be excluded from qualifying for Social housing.

      If the tenant carries on paying rent why would the LL bother evicting!?

  12. Dopey Shelter have just made tenant homelessness even more likely when S21 is abolished.

    They are so thick especially that Neate idiot.

    She just hadn’t thought through the full ramifications of S21 being abolished.

    Tenants will curse her name when they realise she will have stopped their fecklessness.

    Not paying rent will severely compromise tenants in future.

    I’m starting to think that for LL abolishing S21 might not be such a bad idea!!!

    • I wonder whether tenants will then start to trash properties etc while still paying full rent to have the LL evict.

      But I would believe that evicting tenants for ASB and trashing properties etc would still be classed by councils as the tenants making themselves ‘intentionally homeless’!

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