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Scrapping Section 21 ‘will just make life more difficult for tenants’

The government’s proposal to scrap the use of Section 21 notices to evict tenants has been poorly received by landlords, with many likely to consider existing the PRS if the plans go ahead, thus reducing the supply of much needed private rental stock, according to the Residential Landlords Association (RLA). 

The organisation is deeply concerned that landlords will not be able to swiftly regain possession of a property where they have a legitimate reason if Section 21 repossessions are abolished. 

Many landlords often have to rely on the Section 21 powers to retake possession, but the RLA is concerned that removing Section 21 repossessions will increase the workload on the courts as many more repossession cases would need to be heard by them and this would lead to even longer delays, beyond the existing average of 22 weeks. 

The government has so far provided no proposals to ensure the scale of improvements needed to the court system.

Its plans also make it harder, and in some cases practically impossible, for private landlords to evict anti-social tenants, as renters will be able to challenge a notice to evict.  

The RLA argues that such uncertainty would inevitably lead landlords to become more risk averse and less likely to rent to those tenants seen to be of higher risk of rent arrears or causing damage to a property, such as those with pets.  

The RLA’s largest ever survey of almost 6,400 landlords found that 84% would be more selective in who they rented to for this reason. 

David Smith, policy director for the RLA, commented: “The system for repossessing properties should be fair to both tenants and landlords. The Government’s plans do not achieve this.

“The Ministry of Justice’s failure to properly engage with the process and provide clear and detailed proposals to improve the court system is especially disappointing. 

“Tenants and landlords need assurance that in legitimate circumstances they will not be subjected to long and stressful legal proceedings in repossession cases. Without this and other changes the government’s plans to scrap Section 21 will just make life more difficult for tenants.”

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    Without sec 21, or something to replace it, we are all going to be very careful who we let into our properties, if in doubt don't rent to them, sec 8 is not fit for purpose in it's current form.

  • jeremy clarke

    At least 2 enquiries this week from tenants who have been given notice by their landlords who are selling up. In both cases the tenants have pets and are still of the impression that by offering a higher deposit they will be housed. Just another example of gov meddling in a problem that did not exist. Prior to June the 1st we would have insisted that tenants took out damage insurance against pet damage, taken a larger deposit and would have written into the agreement that carpets would need to be treated and cleaned by our cleaners at end of tenancy; in 15 years, never had one tenant with pets object!

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    I am one of very few LL in my area that will consider tenants with a pet, now that I'm unable to take a larger deposit I will have to charge an increased rent for a pet, so once again it's the tenant that will lose out, government really don't think these things through do they?

     
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    Another vote winner set to backfire

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    Simple rules No Pets No single Mums No daily curry eaters No Universal Credit takers.

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    ... and no Plumbers ;-)

  • Paul Barrett

    So just imagine a very nice and helpful LL agrees to take on tenants with a pet in exchange for higher rent.
    Now being a S24 LL this very nice LL does the same for those tenants.
    UNFORTUNATELY the very nice but a but dopey LL finds that he has been pushed into HRT territory!
    As a consequence he loses out in CTC and pension reliefs.
    He consequently ends up financially worse off.
    Of course he could always change his MO and become a thoroughly nasty LL refusing to take on tenants with pets but remains a viable LL and doesn't lose out on all the benefits of remaining a BRT.
    So from a purely financial perspective would a reasonable LL wish to be nice or nasty!?
    Personally I would prefer to be nasty; f### tenants with pets.
    Govt has forced me to become nasty.
    How is that fair on pet owning tenants whom I would have previously considered!?

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