The government has promised to introduce its Renters Reform Bill in the autumn which will include details on abolishing Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions.

Eighteen months after she first announced the Bill, the Queen’s Speech included its intention to enhance renters’ rights in a White Paper outlining plans to improve security for tenants in the private rented sector, as well as strengthening repossession grounds for landlords when they have valid cause.

It will include proposals for a new ‘lifetime’ tenancy deposit model and bring forward reforms to drive improvements in standards, including by ensuring all tenants have a right to redress. It also promises to explore the merits of a landlord register.

In its background briefing, the government says it will consider a set of measures to hold bad landlords to account for delivering safe and decent housing to tenants without penalising good landlords.

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The legislation will also explore improvements and possible efficiencies to the possession process in the courts, to make it quicker and easier for landlords and tenants to use.

Paul Shamplina of Landlord Action, says: “It was expected that the Queen would make reference to the Renters Reform Bill; I’ve been predicting for a while that Section 21 will be abolished in the next 12-18 months, but there has to be reforms of the Section 8 Grounds and major investment made in the Court System coupled to bailiff reforms, especially in the wake of Covid and the lengthy evictions ban”.

Ground rents

The Queen’s Speech also included a promise to end the practice of ground rents for new leasehold properties, a new building safety regulator and to modernise the planning system so that more homes can be built.

Many leaseholders face high charges increased by freeholders over the years, making selling a leasehold property with cladding conditions attached extremely difficult.

The government also plans to spread opportunity across the UK and deliver a national recovery from the pandemic.

The Queen said: “To achieve this, my government will level up opportunities across all parts of the United Kingdom, supporting jobs, businesses and economic growth and addressing the impact of the pandemic on public services.”

Reaction

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Ben Beadle, Chief Executive of the National Residential Landlords Association said: “We welcome the Government’s commitment to publish a White Paper on reforms to the rental sector and consult widely before introducing a Bill.

“What is proposed amounts to some of the biggest changes in the private rented sector for over 30 years. We urge the Government and all others in the sector to use the time they now have to ensure that the reforms are fair and workable for both tenants and landlords.

“This must include comprehensive grounds upon which landlords can legitimately repossess properties, the development of a new tenant-landlord conciliation service to help sustain tenancies wherever possible and court reform to ensure possession cases are dealt with much quicker than the year or more currently being taken.

“Lifetime deposits for tenants provide an opportunity to reduce the upfront cost of renting, but they need to work for all concerned.

“We welcome also the Government’s ambitions to drive out bad landlords from the sector without penalising those who do the right thing. We want to root out all those who bring the sector into disrepute.”

Timothy Douglas, Policy and Campaigns Manager, Propertymark says: “The announcement in today’s Queen’s Speech that the UK Government will publish a Renters Reform White Paper in the Autumn demonstrates that Ministers are prepared to engage with the industry to understand the impact any substantial legislative changes will have on those involved in the private rented sector.

“With the focus of the new package on lifetime deposits, landlord redress and greater enforcement, the UK Government must look at ensuring that a system that would allow deposits to be passported can only take place if there is a bridging loan, with the UK Government as the guarantor, in order to ensure the remaining part of the deposit is covered should the tenant default.

“Additionally, the UK Government must prevent ‘double jeopardy’ and only extend redress membership to properties that are fully managed.

“Propertymark will be engaging with MHCLG and MPs to ensure they fully understand the consequences of any changes. We will also be scrutinising the White Paper and proposed legislation, to ensure the best possible outcome for our members.”

52 COMMENTS

  1. excellent news and hopefully they’ll leave no “landlord wants to move in” and doesnt or “landlord wants to renovate” and doesnt loopholes. cause we all know landlords will try it on.

    • As a renter myself, I do accept that the Landlord will want the property back at some time. In my experience and from people I know Landlords have sent a Section 21 notice too and given 6 or 8 months notice to the tenant, which I think is fair, 2 months was never enough. There are dodgy Landlords around but again in my experience there are even more dodgy Tenants, Sorry!!

    • Absolute twaddle you talk.

      Few LL will wish to remove compliant tenants.

      Most LL wish to remove very quickly feckless rent defaulting tenants.

      That is what S21 is mostly used for so hardly a no fault eviction!!

      The more rights tenants are given the smaller the PRS becomes.

      Not being able to quickly get rid of feckless rent defaulting tenants is a major impediment to proper functioning of the PRS.

      The PRS will therefore be shrinking considerably in the coming years when the new legislation occurs.
      .Tenants can have all the rights in the wirld.

      Not much use if such rights have driven LL to exit the PRS!!

    • It’s the landlords property and they should be able to use it the way they want to. Renters are there temporarily and should appreciate it!!!! Not abuse it

    • @ Bob, you can’t even spell. How about you first try getting a job first before having a pop at hardworking landlords.

  2. “With the focus of the new package on lifetime deposits, landlord redress and greater enforcement, the UK Government must look at ensuring that a system that would allow deposits to be passported can only take place if there is a bridging loan, with the UK Government as the guarantor, in order to ensure the remaining part of the deposit is covered should the tenant default.”

    If the tenant defaults and the government gives a bridging loan, how will the tenant pay this back if they’re relying on benefits for all their financial support?

  3. What exactly will a Landlord ‘try on’? It is their property after all so if they want to get rid of a tenant for whatever reason that’s up to them. What they do with the property after that is nobody’s business but theirs.

    • With all due respect, with attitudes like yours no wonder we are being legislated against. There has to be some protection for people who in good faith take on a tenancy with an expectation of not being moved on at any time with all the hassle and cost of having to do so.

    • So true and common sense. It’s the landlords property and they should be able to use it the way they want to. Renters are there temporarily and should appreciate it!!!! Not abuse it

    • You are not getting that it is someone’s home – not just ‘property’. Im very happy to give tenants over 6 months notice that I intend to sell the property for example. It is exactly your kind of attitude that causes more legislation. Me me me despite their rent feeding your kids.

      • The fact is it is just a property thats being rented out on a short term leasing agreement usually either 6 or 12 months to someone who requires accomadation. This is private rental not social housing. You know this when you take on the property, and realistically no landlord evicts if your ontime with the rent , don’t damage the property.

  4. Whilst I don’t think section 21 should be used on people looking after their property and paying rent on time… I would have been screwed without it as I used it to evict a tenant who paid no rent and damaged the property and intimidated tenants in a property next door. The Solicitor I used said it would be harder to evict on other grounds. How about speeding up evictions for problem tenants and those not paying their rent… and make it easier and quicker to evict on grounds where tenant is at fault.

  5. Ok Bob, let’s take a handful cases of bad landlords and pretend its rife across the PRS. Did you watch the piece on Croydon council the other night where they let their tenants live in the most terrible conditions, yet across the hall the HMO team search high and wide to pull in as much revenue on the pretense of upholding standards.

    How about the tenants that just refuse to leave Bob, because they can and the council advise them that they should wait for an eviction order, even when the landlord is selling and gave them 6 months notice, but can’t rehouse them because they haven’t got enough property? Landlord’s fault that one I guess.

    Let’s not forget the landlord was providing these tenants shelter (unlike shelter) when the council could not?

    We could also talk about the ones that refuse to pay, for no good reason?

    But these examples are just a few and don’t represent the whole PRS, most tenants are upstanding, pay the rent and are excellent tenants, as are the majority of landlords, but that’s not news or a vote winner is it Bob.

    Also because of your blind anti landlord stance, you don’t realise that this will actually help landlords evict tenants, because section 8 needs the overhaul not section 21 (as long as they do overhaul section 8 properly). Section 21 is almost universally used to evict trouble tenants and non paying tenants as its normally quicker.

    And one last thought, if you ran a hotel business Bob, would you chuck the guests out for no reason at all, or would you treat your paying guest nicely so that they stay there as long as they could?

    Last time I checked, landlords want tenants to stay as long as possible.

    Yes there are poor landlords, but there are also poor tenants and both need to be brought to account, not fire off complete nonsense statements that have no merit.

    • Spot on. Many of these tenancy advocacy organisations have a leftist agenda and stir up anti landlord sentiment by vastly overstating the extent of the problem of bad landlords. Meantime, the Government are not prepared to call them out and go along with their BS because they can see the low-hanging votes, which means any consultation will be nothing more than lip service to landlords whilst the authorities do what they want regardless.

  6. And what will renters do when a big majority of landlords who “try it on” have all had enough of rules, regs, legislation etc plus artful tenants taking the pee, so they sell up? There will be a big hole in the PRS

  7. The main worry for Landlords is that the hard work, time and money they have invested in a property will just be destroyed by a bad Tenant. Landlords want and need to rent out a property as it’s the business that are in but if it goes wrong they start to worry. Its an easy decision if it’s a worry then sell up and invest in something else. I’m watching the changes and will be ready to get out if it looks like a worry.

    • You are so correct.
      It looks like increased tenant rights will make being a LL especially a leveraged one to be increasingly unviable.

      The business risks of feckless rent defaulting tenants are just too much.

      I would suggest a graduated repossession process.

      So for all other reasons other than rent default then a standard 6 month notice period would be applied

      I agree with the poster who stated 2 months NTQ was too soon.

      I agree with that EXCEPT in cases of rent defaulting.

      In such cases without any Court action being required rent defaulting tenants should be able to be removed 45 days after 1st rent default.

      Police to be used to assist LL to remove tenants who are still in ANY amount of rent default on the 45th day.

      If the tenant pays with cleared funds ALL the rent arrears no later than the 45th day then the LL may NOT remove the tenant.

      The tenant would need to build up another 2 months of rent arrears which is usually 1 month and 1 day plus 14 days NTQ equals 45 days.

      Most LL would accept a longer 6 month NTQ for all other reasons except for rent defaulting.

      • The police may be a stretch but, if the Government want to make this legislation fair to all, tenants should face criminal sanctions under certain circumstances. As it stands, landlords face unlimited fines or even jail, yet a rogue tenant can smash-up a property, shite on your lino and leave owing thousands with the only (likely) sanction being the potential loss of their deposit. Even then the landlord would have to prove to the DPS the shite was, in fact, the tenants.

        • I was only suggesting the Police to attend to prevent a Breach if the Peace if the tenants refused to be evicted by the LL.
          Any resistance by the tenants the Police to assist the LL to evict.

          Essentially the LL to be his own bailiff with no Court documents required.

          Most people who wouldn’t support feckless rent defaulting tenants would consider 45 days as more than enough time to resolve rent arrears.

          The Breathing Space regulations would not be valid for rent arrears otherwise at the end of 45 days the tenant could have a BS in place preventing eviction by the LL.

          Utilising my fast eviction system for rent arrears only a tenant could run up rent arrears every 45 days before paying them off on the 45th day.

          That is a sort of breathing space period anyway.

          The maximum 5 week deposit would also cover the rent defaulted amount.
          Though it would be insufficient to cover damages etc.

          Of course I am wise enough to know such assistance for LL will never occur which is why intend to become an ex-AST LL ASAP.

          It seems many other LL are like-minded.

          • I would also expect tenants to be required to have insurance or bond in place to cover malicious damage no insurance no bond no accomadation,

        • Award winning statement! EXCELLENT in every respect.

          You should become an MP and I’d definitely vote you in – as many would I’m sure.

    • The government and the renters what somewhere to live, but when the landlords provide them with homes they abuse it and claim it as if it’s there own property.
      I think if the landlords eviction right are taken away a lot of renters will struggle to find a place to live, may be it will make the government to think again.

  8. I have reduced my portfolio, selling anything that has less than a C rated EPC and shuffled my tenants around in the process. Retaining the tenants that pay on time and ditching those that don’t.
    Effectively taking much of the downside risk out of the portfolio.

    Do I care where the other tenants have gone… Frankly no. I’m running a business not a housing charity.
    Try walking out of Tesco without paying the bill and see what happens.

    I have also increased the rents so that all the portfolio is simply unaffordable to anyone on benefits.

    As for pets… The Plumber that works for my agent was attacked by two dogs at a rental property just 10 days ago… say no more…
    The only safe pet is the one in the taxidermists window.

    • Makes perfect sense. It’s a business not a charity. Try to get a room form Shelter, they are quick to complain about landlords but do they provide homes for homeless, no not at all. I know people who have been living under bridge, on their friends sofas etc, no the Birmingham council or shelter care about them. But if the landlords do something then there is always a law to protect the tenants. Why doesn’t the law question Birmingham city council??? And shelter in Birmingham???

  9. This whole situation is going to put more pressure on Landlords and eventually on tenants.
    Surely it would be wise if the government put protection equally on both sides, this will create a much better understanding between tenant and landlord, a tenant will know they are unwise not to look after the landlord, i.e. pay rental and look after the place and vis versa the landlord would also be required to look after the tenant. This surely would cause less friction. Im personally fed up with how landlords are looked upon as bad people, most are good caring people who should be rewarded whilst the bad landlords should be held accountable as should bad tenants at present it doesn’t seem the case.

    • Totally agree. Why the tenants are looked at as a victim whilst the landlords as bad people? It’s the opposite most of the time. Both the tenants and th W landlords should be protected by law and have rights not just the tenants.

  10. Blair opened the floodgates to EU migration yet all govts did nothing to house these people… it was the PRS that stepped in and did the govts job for them. The result is that today LL’s get a slap in the face rather than applause.
    Boris better start requisitioning hotels because there are going to be many landlords leaving the sector because the risk / reward is out of balance resulting in fewer homes for rent.

      • I think you are right in that the govt might want that…

        I’m not so sure large corporations want all the hassle, maybe I’m wrong but accommodating 4.5 million households (Not individuals) that is a very big fish to swallow and will need an army of staff to administer let alone the finance, that will run into hundreds of Billions of £££

        Govt used to do that job and they got out of it by handing it all over to Housing associations.

        Anyway… For me, I’ve earnt a crust over the years but happy to let go and walk off into the sunset.

  11. Been letting property for over 20 years and mostly (almost entirely) to satisfied and compliant tenants. Legislation is now swinging too much in favour for renters with no protection for landlords. The financial risks are now too high so it’s time to plan an exit strategy. I’m certain that most landlords are thinking along similar lines. Expect a shortage of properties in the PRS. Portfolio landlord-I’m out.

  12. I’m the same… long term LL with some very nice tenants however the risk/reward ratio now out of balance. I will retain just a handful that are let to really great long-term tenants but probably sell each one as tenants eventually move on.

    Rents have already jumped significantly recently with a £500/month property now asking £650 however that is still not enough incentive when set against Eviction ban and all the other current and future legislation.

    Boris can make whatever laws he likes, he cant stop me selling up.

  13. After section 21 is outlawed a property owner would need to be a sandwich short of a picnic to consider letting a house, a flat or even a room. I’m old enough to remember and speaking from experience when similar legislation bought in by Labour government in late1960s that outlawed legal landlord/tenant agreements (deeming them not worth the paper they were written on) and created a multitude of rent controlled sitting tenants that were able to be passed down to next generation, hence the properties value plummeted. Properties To Let soon became as rare as rocking horse droppings and the then housing crisis became a whole lot worse.

  14. I wonder what will happen when the EPC rule makes a house currently tenanted illegal to rent out? If a Victorian end terrace it might not be possible to achieve band C and the work required to attempt it would certainly not be possible with tenants in residence. No section 21 means you can’t even ask them to leave so will the landlord have to put them up in a hotel?

  15. No protection for Landlords then !
    Great! This means Landlords will sell. Result= Reducing the housing available for rent= social problem ! and cause property prices to fall= impact on the economy. Well done leaders.🤡

  16. I think rents will steadily increase and properties will be rented void of all carpets – furniture and any white goods etc like the council houses where the tenant provides even the cooker and carpets and decorates
    Private Tenants will have to think more about whats involved in renting a basic property –
    The bond will still be 5 weeks rent but damages will not be as costly when the property is let as a shell – they can trash their own stuff !
    Just charge for a skip and bin it all ready for the next tenant to make it a home!
    Many landords have already moved to letting unfurnished just a matter of time with the pets legislation the carpets will no longer be on the inventory !
    Sad times when landlords provided fully furnished with Ikea lamps / toasters/ microwaves / Tv etc all PAT tested and a welcome bottle of wine 🙁

  17. Government needs to be careful when tampering with rental market because estimates suggest around 25% of landlords will exit PRS after section 21 is outlawed, if that were to happen contributions to HMRC would likely fall by over a £billion every year. No need either for those landlords to pay letting agents so HMRC takes another hit from agents tax returns.

  18. There’s already a massive hole in the PRS. As a landlord, it’s really obvious to me, because I put a property on the market to rent and it lets on day 1.

    Rents are already going up because there’s not enough supply.

    Half the properties I look at are from distressed landlords getting out of the market.

    My suspicion is that the PRS will get consolidated into a smaller number of hands, most likely LTD companies, most likely through private investment. If the sector gets more professionalised as a result, I think that’s a good thing.

    There are bad landlords and bad tenants out there. I hope the new legislation doesn’t penalise good landlords or good tenants.

    • I doubt many will be looking to invest in LTD companies that have most if not all their properties tied up for generations with rent controlled life time plus tenancies able to be passed on to the next generation as seems the likely outcome of the Bill now going through Parliament.

    • What makes you believe that a more professionalised PRS would result in cheaper rents?

      What makes you believe agents can manage properties better than LL?

      My experience of agents is they are expensive and incompetent.
      I’m as professional as any Ltd company.

      What I would like to sed is compulsory CPD training for every LL every 5 years resulting in a licence of no more than £100 every 5 years for that licence.

      The CPD training over 35 hrs could cost maximum of £500.

      So let us consider this situation for a LL with 3 letting properties

      £100 licence per property every 5 years equals

      £300

      A LL licence costing £100 every 5 years

      CPD training at no more than £500 every 5 years.

      So £900 in total every 5 years.

      Seems a fair price to ensure EVERY LL is professionalised.

      No need for Ltd companies at all.

      Few LL would object to that.

      Those who didn’t wish to carry out the CPD training would be required to use regulated and qualified LA.

      LL ARE getting out of the market NOT because they AREN’T making good profits but because the risk of a rent defaulting tenant just isn’t worth it anymore.

      LL not being able to repossess their properties quickly from feckless rent defaulting tenants is a major business hazard.
      Unless S8 facilitates such quick eviction especially in rent defaulting cases then for LL it is far too risky to let unless able to achieve RGI on the tenant or their possible guarantor.

      Rarely are tenants or their guarantors able to qualify for RGI.

      Of course many LL are giving up on AST letting.

      I know of many LL who are fraudulently operating SA and AirBnB letting especially in blocks of flats.

      I don’t blame them at all for operating fraudulently in this way.

      AST letting is just too risky.

      It would be interesting to know how an allegedly enhanced S8 process will facilitate LL getting rid of feckless rent defaulting tenants quickly.

      Personally I can’t sed it happening.

      I believe average repossession times for rent defaulting will be at least a year and most definitely longer.

      It makes letting on a single TA pointless as all a tenant would have to do is default on rent and then live for free for over a year.

      There is NO point in a LL engaging in such a dysfunctional business model.

      FHL
      SA
      AirBnB

      Are the ways LL will make money.

      Single household lettings are no longer viable.

  19. I can understand certain legislations need to be in place to protect good honest tenants as there are as we all know tenants living in squalor bedsits etc. These rentals are normally always owned by the LL that arent abiding by government rules and my guess they don’t even declare the income.Many being sublet by money making illegals which the government cannot seem to touch. Its the law abiding,good LL that are suffering like myself. I go to great lengths for my tenants and have a good relationship with them. They are great tenants but sadly I am feeling it’s getting harder and harder to keep a roof over my tenants heads with more and more rules coming to affect.
    More and more LL are faced with having to sell now as there is going to be nothing left in it except just paying out. Less premises for renters and the ones that are left will demand higher rents to cover costs.

  20. Boris won’t hesitate to throw landlords to the wolves if he thought it would help keep the ex labour supporters onside come next election.

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