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Give tenants more rights in reform bill, urge campaigners

evictions

A coalition of influential housing charities and campaign groups has urged the Government to go even further with its Renters (Reform) Bill and tip the balance even further in favour of tenants living within the private rented sector.

The Renters Reform Coalition, which includes Shelter, Crisis, the Nationwide Foundation, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Generation Rent and 15 other organisations, says the Government’s plans within the Bill are ‘inadequate’.

Instead it wants tenants to be given four-month notice periods when being evicted, not the current plan of two months and tenants to be protected from evictions for two years at the start of a tenancy, rather than six months at present.

It also wants the evidential threshold for landlords when they are trying to evict tenants to be raised – such as when landlords say they want to sell a property or move back in.

Gove changes

In a letter sent to housing secretary Michael Gove, the coalition says: “Without these changes, the tenant's experience post-reform will too often resemble the current situation: renters will continue to be subject to the threat of unfair evictions; they will continue to be subject to frequent, expensive moves; and they will continue to feel unable to challenge their landlords to demand that basic standards be met”.

But although Gove has yet to responds publicly to the letter, over the weekend he committed to bringing in the promised ban on Section 21 evictions before the General Election.

A spokesperson for the Coalition responded to his comments to the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg on Sunday about the ban, adding: “It’s critical the government don’t give in to pro-landlord amendments that would abolish no-fault evictions in name only - just to be able to say they have delivered.”

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