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Generation Rent boss promoted to Chief Executive within a month

The head of the tenants’ activist group Generation Rent started work in the role of director in mid-June - and has within a few weeks been elevated to a grander title.

Ben Twomey - a former Labour candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner in Warwickshire, a member of the Labour Homelessness Campaign and author of a document on how the party could win the next General Election - is now to be known as Chief Executive.

The new title was not the subject of an announcement to the industry but was put into press releases from the group; the latest is complaining about what it calls the “delay” in the Second Reading of the Renters Reform Bill in the House of Commons.

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When the Bill was launched two months ago Generation Rent was an integral part of the government’s publicity, with Twomey’s predecessor Dan Wilson Craw - who was listed merely as ‘acting director’ - saying: “The Renters' Reform Bill is a huge opportunity to improve the lives of the 11 million people who now rent from private landlords in England. Arbitrary Section 21 evictions make it impossible for tenants to put down roots and report problems about their home with confidence. Abolishing them will take away much of the stress of renting and improve communication and trust between tenants and landlords.”

Fast forward to today and Craw’s successor is unhappy that the government has not prioritised the Bill above other legislation, with the news that its Second Reading in the House of Commons will have to wait its turn until the early autumn.

A statement from Twomey says the wait will mean “unfair evictions continue despite government promises to outlaw them.”

The group does not quote any source or explanation for its figures, but it claims that there will be one Section 21 claim made every 15 minutes over the six-week summer holiday, “meaning potentially 3,787 unfair evictions before children go back to school and Parliament reconvenes.”

And - again without sourcing its figures - it says: “There could be as many as 90 Section 21 eviction notices issued every day over the summer holidays.”

Twomey is also quoted as saying: “Despite promising four years ago to outlaw arbitrary evictions, the government has failed to table the second reading of the Renters (Reform) Bill.

“We are now seeing the desperate situation in which every 15 minutes over the summer a renter will be packing their bags, not to go on holiday but because they are being evicted from their home.

“Recent soaring rises in rents on new tenancies mean that many families will no longer be able to afford to rent near their children’s schools if they are evicted.

“Delays in parliament are leading to despair across the country. Urgent action is needed to end unfair evictions and Generation Rent will keep not stop campaigning until renters are protected.”

The last permanent leader of Generation Rent was Baroness Alicia Kennedy who went under the title of ‘director’ from her appointment in June 2020 until her departure this spring.

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    He can call himself whatever title he wants but he still hasn’t worked out that a LL doesn’t give out a S21 for no reason. There is always a reason, tenants not paying not looking after the house, being rude etc, S24, Interest rates, EPC’s, councils, poor legal redress and agitator groups like his cause homelessness not me just waking up one day and thinking ‘You know what I’m gonna give a tenant notice for no reason’ He’s purposely ignoring our reasons for leaving the market and no amount of stamping his feet like a small kid will change it

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    Do tell me is their any reason a renter should be able to keep their home

     
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    No, because it’s not their property

     
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    Mr Twomey so 11 million renters are housed by Private Landlords, you are making a lot of claims and figures don’t seem to be any obstacle for you.
    So please tell me how many the Private Sector Housed before the introduction of Section 21 the very foundation of all private letting ?.
    We are providing quality accommodation for renters at very affordable rents in the main. Say where I house dozens in London where all my properties are Licensed and 5-6-7 persons share the house they are paying about £100.00 pw week each this is cheap living and has helped several to put down roots but not in my property that you want to do.
    They have bought their own property then started their family on several occasions.
    The problem is people are ahead of their stations and want to run before they can walk, putting down roots first before having a place to live.
    Mr Twomey how many do you house or do you house more than Shelter.

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    Mr Twomey the extra Section 21 Application’s you are referring to in the Summer are a direct consequence of THE RENTERS REFORM BILL that you want forced-in.
    So there you go there’s the evidence to scrap the Bill now before more damage is done,
    thanks for that.

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    Jobs for the boys 😂🎉💰 classic old school. They have to keep hammering us to justify their existence 🤐

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    And what sort of pay is he milking out of this so called 'charity'?

     
    Just Mogler

    A little charity accounts digging reveals Generation Rent is funded by The Nationwide Foundation...otherwise called Nationwide Building Society (BS). The staff of the foundation are the BS's staff. As a current investor with this BS it seems to be a two edge sword in that it supports the donations to housing charities etc and yet is causal in LLs leaving the sector. As one of the employees is on £60k+ I leave it to you to guess who?

     
    Richard LeFrak

    My personal mortgage is with them and has six years to run. At 2.1 %. Keep getting calls asking me to change or offer me more money…..! No

     
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    Generation Rent has played a significant part in reducing supply and therefore increasing rents in the private rental sector.

    They should have focused attention on the provision of social housing for their generation, not on attempting to take over the properties of the older generation. Their strategies have been completely counterproductive.

  • Richard LeFrak

    This Fool should look at himself. He also should be called out for unsubstantiated claims of landlords throwing S21 all over.

    I could put as much money as he likes as a bet and I personally would ask every single landlord the reason for evicting. I with a degree of confidence would say at least 75% would answer RRB....

    Getting rid during summer is also a way landlords can get the property back, lick of paint and sold before the next budget statement.

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    Of course, you are absolutely right Peter. It is obvious that the impending legislation is the main reason that landlords are issuing Section 21 notices.

     
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    I am one of those people who evicted. Although I read half of last year's White Paper and acted on that. I only got as far as half (about 40 pages) just for the shear 'comedy horror value'. It was as if though Gove said to Shelter, Gen Rant and Acorn write what you want. I'll stick the Department of Levelling Down's front cover on it. I'd already decided to sell within the first page or two. I couldn't be bothered to read the second half.

     
  • Richard LeFrak

    Not one of these Activists groups have said lets speak with landlords and see their challenges and gain an understanding so we can put forward real life proposals that work for all.

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    100% correct. There is absolutely no engagement with the issues at all. Generation Rent and Shelter continue to advocate unfair rights for tenants which landlords cannot agree to and therefore supply goes down and rents go up.

     
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    He’s had NO F IDEA . At all. He’s labour too- who will when in will make everything worse.( if possible).

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    £57k plus pension from what I can see

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    I expect that'll increase

     
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    Just imagine if there was plenty of rental properties available. The power tenants would have, if they didn't like the landlord or rent increase, they could just up and leave for a different property.

    Now that would be real tenant power.

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    This is a condundrum! Why do a lot of these Union leaders and agitators have Irish names?? We have one flat that we rent out. This is to supplement our pension. We have been very lucky with all the tenants we have had over the years, except one, although we have never had to evict anyone. We have even been to weddings, parties of our tenants etc. We always get to know our tenants and deal with any problems immediately! We have complied with all the legislation but,If the rules get any harder we will just sell up. Getting too old to deal with all this crap!

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    I have only given a S21, after asking the tenants 2 months before the termination date. If they wish to leave, then I ask them to give me in writing. If they do not I let them know to make sure we both know where we stand. If they are not paying rent or moved all my furniture, lamps, painting mirrors etc, I gave them notice of S21. I like tenants to stay but they are only here for one or 2 years stay from abroad and walk without paying 2 months rent and no notice, leave a lot of their stuff for me remove and resolve all issues of broken door knobs, kitchen cabinet units, toilet seat, broken tiles, bashed in doors etc. I get a Whatsapp message stating they have left to go back home to Romania or Poland as father passed away or taken ill and will not return.

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    Twomey and the likes of him are creating this useless brainstorming ideas to get their career on the move and not thinking anything about the welfare of the tenants. IF they did care, then they would start working towards providing social housing themselves by buying properties from the market, either from the landlords or developers etc. They need to show by example rather than dictate to responsible LLs. Twomey and people like him will be out of picture when they have caused tremendous suffering to the tenants in the near future. They would be on fat salaries or fat pensions.
    Self-serving and pompous do-gooders for themselves only.

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    Perfectly summed up Vibha, true for most charities and trade unions

     
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