The Baroness leading the campaign group Generation Rent claims the official figure for evictions in the second quarter of this year “represents a small number of renters who have faced eviction.”
Baroness Alicia Kennedy, director of the group, was responding to the government releasing figures showing 1,516 evictions took place in England and Wales between April and June this year.
She says: “These figures are a huge increase on the previous quarter, despite restrictions on evictions by bailiffs only being lifted in June. But this still only represents a small number of renters who have faced eviction.
“There are thousands more who have lost work and got behind on their rent during the pandemic, and will find it difficult to repay that, even if their income recovers. It is almost impossible to move to a new home if you’re relying on benefits, so these renters face huge uncertainty in the months ahead while they wait to be told when the bailiffs will arrive.
“Only a Covid Rent Debt Fund to clear these rent arrears will help renters back to their feet and remove the threat of homelessness from thousands of families. The government must act urgently to relieve this hardship.”
Earlier this week Paragon Bank revealed that its research has highlighted each landlord has an average of 1.3 tenants with rent arrears - actually the lowest since the start of 2011.
The latest figure comes following a decline from 1.6 tenants per landlord in the early part of this year, with the numbers of tenants in arrears falling consistently after climbing to 2.1 in Q2 2020, as the pandemic impacted incomes.
In addition, the average amount of outstanding rent has reached a four-year low.
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