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Government insists eviction ban “protects most vulnerable renters”

The government insists that its ban on bailiff-enforced evictions “protects the most vulnerable renters” during the pandemic.

The claim comes in the official announcement about the ban extension, released by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government just before the start of the weekend.

The statement was combined with a substantial cash boost for councils to help the homeless. Those parts of the statement that relate to the private rental sector are set out below - these are the words of the government:


“Extra support to help protect rough sleepers and renters from the effects of Covid-19 has been announced by the Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick today (8 January 2021).

“Renters will continue to be supported during the new national restrictions, with an extension to the ban on bailiff evictions for all but the most egregious cases for at least 6 weeks – until at least 21 February – with measures kept under review.

“Communities Secretary, Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP said: ‘At the start of this pandemic we made sure that the most vulnerable in society were protected. This winter, we are continuing in this vein and redoubling our efforts to help those most in need.

“…’We are also extending the ban on bailiff evictions – helping to protect the most vulnerable renters.’

“Court rules and procedures introduced in September to support both tenants and landlords will remain in place and regularly reviewed. The courts will continue to prioritise cases, such as those involving anti-social behaviour, illegal occupation and perpetrators of domestic abuse in the social sector.

“Landlords continue to be required to give 6-month notice periods to tenants until at least 31 March except in the most serious circumstances.

“…A new mediation pilot will further support landlords and renters who face court procedures and potential eviction from next month (February). It will offer mediation as part of the possession process to try and help landlords and tenants to reach a mutual agreement and keep people in their homes.

“Helping to resolve disputes through mediation will enable courts to prioritise urgent cases, supporting landlords and tenants to resolve issues quickly without the need for a formal hearing. The mediation pilot will work within the existing court arrangements in England and Wales.

“The protections for renters are on top of the comprehensive package of support the government has put in place to help households, including support for businesses to pay staff salaries and strengthening the welfare safety-net by billions of pounds.

“This has helped to protect renters from the economic fallout of the pandemic by supporting them meet their outgoings, including paying their rent.”


At the same time as the announcement about the ban extension, the MHCLG issued what it calls “extra information” about its attempts to help tenants during the Coronavirus crisis.

The extra info states:

"The package of support is reducing the number of evictions as applications to the courts for possession by private and social landlords were down 86% between July and September 2020, compared to the same quarter in 2019. 

"No repossessions were recorded between April and end September 2020 compared to 14,847 in the same period last year.

"The government has changed the law in England to ensure bailiffs do not enforce evictions for 6 weeks until 22 February, with no evictions expected to 8 March at the earliest. 

"This will be kept under review.

"The only exceptions to this are for the most egregious cases – anti-social behaviour, illegal occupation, death of a tenant where the property is unoccupied, fraud, perpetrators of domestic abuse in social housing and extreme rent arrears equivalent to 6 months’ rent.

"Guidance to support landlords and tenants in the social and private rented sectors understand the possession action process and new rules within the court system in England and Wales is available.

"For those renters who require additional support, there is an existing £180 million of government funding for Discretionary Housing Payments for councils to distribute to support renters with housing costs."

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

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    Protecting rogues too.


    There are rogue tenants as well as good tenants. There are rogue landlords as well as good landlords. Let's not stereotype.


    Decent tenants and landlords work together to resolve issues. Rogues don't.

    • 11 January 2021 10:31 AM

    Plenty more rogue tenants than rogue LL.
    For sure.


    What evidence do you base your statement on, David? You seem very certain. If you add: 'for sure', you must have such evidence. Please share it when putting out such a statement on a public site like LT. - But if it's just a hunch, then say so.


    Look at court statistics comparing number of tenants and landlords taken to court. Many more rogue tenants than landlords.

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    "No repossessions were recorded between April and end September 2020 compared to 14,847 in the same period last year."

    Presumably these were all excellent tenants who were unfairly evicted by the greedy LLs.

    I accept that there are tenants struggling financially because of Covid but why are LLs expected to pick up the tab? Many of them are struggling too and unable to access any meaningful financial support.

    Why doesn't the Govt support both sides of the housing market?

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    Perhaps we should add a term to our advertising ''no vulnerable tenants''.

    • 11 January 2021 09:56 AM

    Nice. That is going in my ads immediately. :-)

    PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    See our recent Post ( Facebook ) on Rent Smart Wales evaluation report by NRLA, where I mention what's likely to happen to vulnerable tenants. Others such as Joe Speye agrees too.

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    When will the government realise that landlords only resort to evictions and bailiffs for a very good reason.

    James B

    I’m sure they aren’t that stupid to not know this .. but in the frantic chase to win the tenant vote this fact means nothing ..

  • James B

    Guarantors are mandatory going forward now for all tenancies with us .. homeowner working and with good credit or the property stays empty til one ticks all the boxes .. we won’t be hung out to dry one more time

    PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    We have been advising this for a couple of years, and its finally sinking in.
    See Powerful arguments we make for Why, landlords are demonised by Tenant groups and Govt, in article on our site,
    " The Madness of Housing "

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    • 11 January 2021 09:54 AM

    I am with you....All the way.

    We really should get organised and make sure all the councils and default tenants realise that this cannot carry on.

    Mark Wilson

    What you planning? To storm parliament?



    Pay attention. James B said what's planned.

  • Matthew Payne

    Politics alone. No Court was about to grant possession orders with immediate eviction dates anyway. The earliest would have been early April for the tiny % of the most extreme cases. Earliest mainstream arrears evictions won't start until mid summer when we have broken the back of the vaccination program, the virus will be in remission, and with winter long gone. And then there is the Court backlog, which apparently won't be cleared until 2023. This has changed nothing for 99% of landlords.

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    • 11 January 2021 09:58 AM

    Why not? Makes sense to me....At least it makes them think about the defaulting feckless scum who do not follow and abide by contracts.

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    • 11 January 2021 10:01 AM

    Typical UK....protecting those lazy feral parasites


    welfarism--remember mps are benefit scroungers as is the whole public sector

  • James B

    I assume Mark Wilson is just a tenant trolling this platform ?

  • George Dawes

    And screws landlords for everything they’ve got

    Nice to be appreciated ain’t it ?

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    Its all designed to bankrupt us for sure, the big boys are ready and waiting to take over renting with Gov' help all muscling-in, whether taking over portfolios or building thousands of flats to rent, they want us gone, its not sustainable, 6 months or 12 months if rent is not paid & no action possible.
    Perhaps the Housing Secretary Mr Robert Jenrick should now suspend HM0 Licensing Schemes that are an extra huge burden on the Private Rented Sector, according to the rules of the schemes for a successful HM0 application the LL must have adequate financial arrangements to allow for repairs & up keep of the Property. How does he square this with a bar on income recovery, scrap the HMO Schemes now that only ever applied to one half of Rental Housing.

    PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    Michael, I explain it all in ' The Madness of Housing '

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    After 2 lifetimes of public service, supporting vulnerable people and being badly paid, at least we had our pensions to look forward to! Property seems like the best investment.... But now you want to use my lifes savings to house people for free and takeaway a large proportion of my income now I'm old and vulnerable???? Is this a bad dream ???? LOL!

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    A 'greedy landlord' would have no reason to want to evict a good tenant. A bad tenant is a very different animal.

    If a tenant is vulnerable they have recourse to some funding from their local council or the Gov't.

    The rulers of this country don't want to have to pay out for a tenant when they can do what they are doing and force landlords to keep tenants in place whether they pay or not. This solves a financial problem for something around 15,000 tenanted properties as far as the Gov't are concerned. All our jumping up and down is wasting energy we will all need in our old age!

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    Rishi, Robert, Sadiq, was there a film of 3 blind mice.


    You've lost me!


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