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Landlords and agents seek judicial review of Scots rent controls

john blackwood sla rents

A coalition of landlords and letting groups is seeking a judicial review of the Scottish government's rent control and eviction ban legislation. 

The Scottish Association of Landlords, Scottish Land and Estates and Propertymark have submitted a petition to Edinburgh's Court of Session following the government's announcement that it would continue with rent controls for the PRS but remove them for the social rented sector from 1st March.

Their petition highlights how a well-off tenant renting in the private sector now has financial protection not available to someone in more challenging financial circumstances in the social sector.

Increased costs

It adds that the law does not make any distinction or provide relief based on the different circumstances between larger, institutional companies who might be able to shoulder increased costs, and individual landlords who can't.

The eviction ban also creates a delay in addressing arrears which adversely impacts landlord cash flow, culminating in a reduction in capital value, according to the groups.

Financial pressures

John Blackwood (main picture), chief executive of the Scottish Association of Landlords, says while raised council and housing association tenants' rents mean social landlords can do repairs and improvements, private landlords are faced with similar financial pressures.

'The ministerial statement in parliament last week and yesterday's announcement make it perfectly clear the Scottish government plans to continue with eviction ban and rent increase restrictions in the private rented sector beyond 31st March,'� says Blackwood. 'Landlords have had enough.'�

nathan emerson fraud

Nathan Emerson (pictured), CEO of Propertymark, believes that the PRS has been clearly singled out with complete disregard for the positive impact it provides.

'It is vital that we ensure that the residential property sector in Scotland is investible and that is why we have been left with no choice but to formally object to these measures with the Court of Session in Scotland,'� he adds.

The legal challenge from landlords and agents follows the Scottish government's decision to U-turn on its rent freeze and instead, from April 1st, turn it into a 'rent cap'.


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