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Two month mediation project starts - is it really long enough to succeed?

An innovative pilot project aiming to reduce evictions by providing free mediation between private landlords and tenants has been launched in Portsmouth - but it’s running just two months until the end of December.

The pilot scheme, run by Portsmouth Mediation Service on behalf of Portsmouth council, will offer free, independent advice and support for both landlords and tenants that find themselves at odds on a range of topics, including rent arrears and repairs.

A council spokesperson says: “This is a really challenging time – the economic impact of pandemic has begun to bite, recent reductions to Universal Credit and rising gas and electricity prices are going to place a huge strain on the household budgets of the estimated 30,000 people living in privately rented accommodation in the city.


“Our ambitious and radical strategy for the private rental sector is about making sure there are mechanisms in place to prevent homelessness and provide safe, stable accommodation for tenants – and this is one of the ways we hope to achieve that.”

The council claims that findings from the pilot will be used to inform future plans to support both landlords and tenants in the city. 

Research carried out by the council so far shows around one in six of Portsmouth’s landlords fell into it by accident. 

It says there are often similarities between what tenants and landlords need, and it is hoped that this common ground will help the mediation service to find ways of managing conflicts when things don’t go to plan.


Steve Rolls from Portsmouth Mediation Service adds: “The service is designed to help landlords and tenants find a solution in the early stages of any particular problem. Whatever the difficulty, our skilled team will use a restorative approach to facilitate positive communication and help repair relationships so that everyone concerned can achieve a better outcome.

“The team are also very well connected to many specialist support organisations across Portsmouth and can point people in the right direction for specific practical help and guidance.”

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    I'm struggling to imagine the situation in which mediation will solve the issue - rent arears; ASB; trashing property? Doesn't seem likely to me!

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    You can't mediate with tenants who just ignore you and listen to all the advice to stay put until the bailiffs arrive.

    Perhaps if the mediators are well built and can help them put all their stuff in the street?

    Theodor Cable

    All we need is a robust system that allows evictions after a 24 hour default.

    It works incredibly well in Germany and Australia.
    The Police do the evictions because there is hardly any for them to attend.

    So there is no need for Baliiffs either and no need for courts and judges, and all the costs those institutions cost.

    It would save multi millions in administration, and time and justice is satified instantly.

    Over time, rental defaults would be found only in the history books.

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    The do gooders with good intentions obviously haven't dealt with bad tenants before. No amount of mediation will work when the tenants have no intention of paying. This is just kicking the can down the road for another 2 months.


    they have no good intentions--they hate you--they really do!!

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    Skilled council employee ?? that's a joke for a start, they have no idea of the real world.

    PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    yep, skilled and Council - don't quite go together.

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    Hopefully they will realise that so called "no fault evictions" really are necessary if relations have broken down to such an extent that the best solution is a parting of the ways.

    Theodor Cable

    Sure....Parting is good.......And the parting of a non paying tenant shoud be made to part immediately.

    No rent, no house - Immediately and no judges, courts baliffs, clerks and the whole show would then be unnecessary and instantaneous.

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    • 09 November 2021 09:26 AM

    Another time wasting scheme to make landlords wait.

  • PossessionFriendUK PossessionFriend

    You can't mediate Unpaid Rent !

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    Sandwell MBC introduced a similar scheme titled 'call before you serve'. I was sceptical just as the above commentators are. So far I have referred 6 of my tenants the results were outstanding: two left one was rehoused by the council and that's another story. The other three started to behave and pay the rent and arrears.

    It is a well-known psychological trick the introduction of perceived powerful third party can resolve matters

    As the old saying goes do "not knock it until you tried it"

    Jim Haliburton
    The HMO Daddy


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