Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, today painted an inaccurate picture of the private rented sector.
During Prime Minister’s Questions he referenced a woman who had lived in her private rented home for ten years who faced having to leave her property. He used it to call for three year tenancies and warned that tenants were living in fear of eviction.
Official statistics however show that private sector tenants have lived in their homes for an average of over four years.
Figures from the Ministry of Justice also show that in the most recent period for which data is available, 62 per cent of all claims to repossess a property by landlords were in the social rented sector, compared to 16 per cent in the private rented sector.
Further figures show that just a tenth of all tenancies in the private rented sector are ended by a landlord or letting agent.
RLA Policy Director, David Smith, commented:
“The figures speak for themselves. The vast majority of tenancies are ended by the tenant, and not the landlord and the very fact that the person quoted in today’s exchanges has lived in their rental home for ten years shows the sector is already providing long term stability.
“Many tenants have a perceived fear of eviction because tenancies will often be on the basis of six or one year periods which are, in the vast majority of cases, renewed. It is disappointing that the Leader of the Opposition has needlessly played to such fears.
“We welcome the Government’s plans to consult on barriers that make it difficult to offer longer tenancies which will provide an important opportunity especially to address the problem of mortgage lenders preventing landlords from offering them.”
The RLA represents over 50,000 private sector residential landlords in England and Wales.
- The English Housing Survey headline report for 2015/16 can be accessed here Page 18 notes: “for private renters the average length of residence was 4.3 years.”
- The Ministry of Justice’s latest statistics on mortgage and landlord repossessions in England and Wales for July to September 2017 are available here Page 5 notes: “The majority (62%) (21,179) of landlord possession claims were social landlord claims, 22%, (7,621) were accelerated claims and 16% (5,372) were private landlord claims.”
- The English Housing Survey Private rented sector report for 2015-16 can be accessed here Page 21 notes: “When asked about their most recent move, most private renters said that their last tenancy ended because they wanted it to (73%). A tenth (11%) said that their landlord or agent ended the tenancy.”