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Labour wants to offer private tenants greater power

Labour plans to abolish legislation permitting private landlords to evict tenants without giving a reason.

Section 21 notices, which have been in place for 30 years, allow a landlord to give a tenant notice to start the process to end an Assured Shorthold Tenancy.

The proposal has been drawn up by John Healey, the shadow housing secretary, and would see a Jeremy Corbyn-led government change the law so that so-called ‘no-fault’ evictions - when landlords serve tenants notice to vacate their property without saying why - scrapped.


Healey announced the policy at the party’s conference in Liverpool yesterday.

The shadow housing secretary also unveiled plans for a £20m fund to set up ‘renters' unions’ to support tenants in disputes with landlords.

In his speech to Labour party members, Healey said: “Tenants who rent from private landlords have been hit hard by the housing crisis.

“Labour's commitment is clear: we'll give renters new rights to control rental costs, improve conditions and increase security.

“Renters’ unions help put power in the hands of tenants.

“And the next Labour government will fund set-up costs for these unions across the country to support renters to defend their rights, and make the housing market fairer.”

In response, David Smith, policy director for the Residential Landlords Association, pointed out that many private landlords resort to Section 21 notices because the alternative procedures “take too long to process through the courts”.

The RLA is calling for a new housing court to bring justice more quickly for both landlords and tenants.

Smith commented: “A root and branch review is needed of the current system which, in the worst cases, takes up to 30 weeks. Any changes must support the provision of homes to rent which the country needs.

“The vast majority of tenants enjoy good relations with their landlords. In the minority of cases where things go wrong however, landlords need the confidence that they can regain possession of a property swiftly when faced with tenants not paying their rent or committing anti-social behaviour.”

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Poll: Do you think Labour should crackdown on landlords’ power to evict tenants without any reason?


  • David Lester

    If Labour get in will sell portfolio, realise that Conservatives see Landlords as "cash cows" however this bunch of lefties want everything for free!


    I'm with you on that one.
    The Tories haven't been very sympathetic towards landlords, but Labour would be infinitely worse.

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    What are the chances of corbyn becoming P M in 2022? little and none.


    Hopefully, but never say never?
    He will no doubt appeal to the youngsters for support as he did to some effect at the last General Election.

  • James B

    Routine campaigning for generation rent votes that’s all

  • Mark Wilson

    RIP buy to let, it was good whilst it lasted.


    Landlords who stick it out will benefit from the faint hearted who bail out due to more tenants chasing fewer properties, resulting in higher rents. It's already happened in Scotland where we have a choice of two loony parties vying to outloon each other in our toy parliament.


    Mark that's defeatist, i'm sticking with it, yes there are things being put in the way, but we will find ways around them, rents will rocket, bad tenants will not be able to rent, many more homeless sleeping in shop door ways, governments are shooting themselves in the foot but are too thick to see that.

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    Healey said: “Tenants who rent from private landlords have been hit hard by the housing crisis."

    They will be hit a damn sight harder if Labour get in and these plans are implemented as there will be considerably less rental properties available!


    Look at Scotland's btl market, following SNP's new prs legislation last December which abolished fixed term leases, limited rent increases to once per year. Result is fewer properties to let and rents up 25% for the most desirable properties. English landlords should relax if their properties are in demand as this plan will backfire on tenants as it has in Scotland.

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    He could get in, anything seems possible after Trump. If this did happen then there would be much stricter vetting of new tenants to try to eliminate any trouble makers. This will exacerbate the already reduced PRS and there will be more homelessness due to the lack of movement.

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    How about using fixed term leases. Is this a possibility?


    SNP have outawed fix term leases up here as part of recent legislation but still plenty of ways to ditch dodgy tenants, like major refurbishment required, property needed for own or family use, to be sold etc. Basically the most predictable effect will be fewer properties chased by more potential tenants and this higher rents.


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