The government’s latest extension for the ban on bailiff-enforced evictions - taking it up until the end of May - is still not enough for campaigning charity Shelter.
It wants measures to be set out on how tenants affected by the pandemic will get longer-term assistance from the taxpayer.
Yesterday Robert Jenrick, the housing secretary, announced an extra two months for the ban, saying: “It is right that as we move through the roadmap, we ensure that businesses and renters continue to be supported. We have taken unprecedented action to support both commercial and residential tenants throughout the pandemic – with a £280 billion economic package to keep businesses running and people in jobs and able to meet their outgoings, such as rent.
“These measures build on the government’s action to provide financial support as restrictions are lifted over the coming months – extending the furlough scheme, business rates holiday and the Universal Credit uplift.”
However Polly Neate - chief executive of Shelter - was much more cautious in her response to the initiative.
“These extensions will come as a relief to the frightened renters who’ve been flooding our helpline with calls. While the threat level from the virus is still high, it’s right that renters can stay safe in their homes” she says.
“But as we follow the roadmap out of lockdown, the destination for renters remains unknown. The pandemic has repeatedly exposed just how broken private renting is, leaving many people hanging onto their homes by a thread. And, although the ban and longer notice periods are keeping renters safe for now, they won’t last forever.”
The latest extension means that until May 31 private landlords will need to continue to give tenants six months’ notice before they can repossess properties, except in the following circumstances:
- Anti-social behaviour (four weeks’ notice)
- False statements provided by the tenant (two to four weeks’ notice)
- Over six months’ accumulated rent arrears (four weeks’ notice)
- Breach of immigration rules under the ‘Right to Rent’ policy (three months’ notice).
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.