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Sadiq Khan and activist leader launch rent control social media campaign

London Labour Mayor Sadiq Khan and the Labour-supporting leader of the Generation Rent pressure group have starred in a lengthy social media video calling for rent controls.

The Labour Party nationally has said clearly that it rejected rent controls, with shadow housing secretary Lisa Nandy stating in June that such a policy would merely be a “short-term fixing plaster” in any bid to solve the housing crisis. 

She said at the time: “It is perhaps inevitable that the debate has turned again to short term fixes. And when housebuilding is falling off a cliff and buy to let landlords are leaving the market, rent controls that cut rents for some, will almost certainly leave others homeless.”


However, in a video posted on social media both Mayor Sadiq Khan the Generation Rent’s new chief executive Ben Twomey put themselves at odds with their national party.

After a case study of a tenant claiming to face a £450 per month rent rise, Khan tells the camera: “This is simply unacceptable. 2.7m Londoners live in privately rented homes. As the cost of living crisis worsens, renters are seeing bills soar and incomes squeezed, leaving them in a vulnerable and financially precarious position.”

He continues: “I’ve called on the government time and time again to give me the powers to freeze rents.”

Then Twomey is interviewed and links the rent control issue to the controversial ULEZ ultra low emission zone policy championed by Khan in London.

The Generation Rent CEO, who has been a Labour candidate in past elections, says: “It’s absolutely vital that people have decent and secure homes. It’s as important to us as the air we breathe. And so for people like [case study Alex] they talk of the constant worry  they have to deal with on top of all the extra costs that come with moving when there’s an eviction, that comes with any property when your landlord won’t lift a finger to help you.

“All of these problems are things that uniquely facing renters that make the cost-of-living crisis, really within it [sic], there’s a cost of renting crisis too and that needs to be addressed.”

The video concludes with Khan saying that he won’t stop fighting “to fix the housing crisis” and “to build a fairer London for all.”

The London Mayoral election takes place in May next year.

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  • George Dawes

    The video concludes with Khan saying that he won’t stop fighting “to fix the housing crisis” and “to build a fairer London for all.”

    Try resigning , that'd be a definite step forward

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    These people have created a housing crisis, and now they want to make it worse. The RENTERS REFORM WHITE PAPER AND BILL have reduced supply and driven up rents. Stop interfering in the PRIVATE rental sector and the situation will improve for everyone.

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    if the £450 pcm rise is unreasonable the tenant can go to a rent tribunal & challenge it. Unfortunately for tenants, the lack of housing available means the tribunal is unlikely to find it is unreasonable!


    I bet the landlord wishes his mortgage was increasing by jist £450.

    More anti landlord measures will bring higher prices not lower prices - Khan should stop acting like a bratty child.

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    Well said Ellie. I don’t see these two calling for freezes on landlords costs like the mortgage and removal of S24, or any other landlord issues. Just stop us being able to charge more…. No thanks.

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    Knowing Khan 🐍 I bet he gets it in the end 🆘😱

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    The moment rent controls come in. The brown envelopes will follow

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    Stop ULEZ if you are concerned about Londoners struggling!


    He is making everyone poorer and more miserable - motorists, tenants and landlords.

    I say landlords because landlords are selling their rental properties and putting their money into other safer investments - and they may have wanted to leave those properties to their children when they died

  • Richard LeFrak

    These two failed politicians have a cheek, Twomey and Khan calling for Landlords to help? How, costs have gone up in respect of Interest rates, local licensing, S24, now rent reform bill.

    Khan should look at himself, if that guys rent has gone up 450 a month then Khan should lift his fkn finger and stop charging the poor guy nearly 300 a month for ULEZ.

    Khan and his band of ambulance chasers will be right on this when he is booted and he has to go back to working on no win no fee. As Jahan stated more brown envelopes will be appearing and renting going underground which removes money from the exchequer.

  • David Lester

    Suggest all London Landlords increase their rents to market rate now before these idiots have a chance of capping it! Remember you ae a business not a charity!


    That is the natural response to the possiblity of rent freezes - they are causing far more problems all the time for tenants, than they are solving.


    I’ve done exactly that, some by up to £250 PCM. Why would a LL lift any finger with moving costs and eviction, we aren’t their mates.

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    Don't forget all those London Boroughs with Selective Licensing!

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    Landlords are forced to increase the rents by 20%, as the costs have increased dramatically over the last 5 years. Apart from S24, the maitenance costs of properties have increased. Workmen costs have increased and also all the materials. Ulez costs will be passed on to the landlord by handyman, electrician, plumber, gas engineers etc. Khan has no brain to use it. He haa a short term vision. He needs to be booted out. However, London is now more labour intensive, unfortunately. Tenants feel rent controls are going to help them.

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    Khan should be careful what he wishes for. Ulez is now costing London a fortune. So will rent freeze.

    Its like the energy cap which forced so many energy companies to the wall. Same is happening to LL in PRS.

    Government gave £66 pcm the to each household as a sticking plaster to ridiculous energy bill whilst allowing the big boys of energy industry to walk away with billions of profit.

    The build to rent is the Government answer to this rent crisis but this will take decades to deliver but only really provide accommodation for 1-2' beds - who.is going to supply family accommodation?

    It's interesting that Khan does not ever have any balance discussion with housing providers but if listen to the news and radio there is already so much out there about exit of the Ll.

    This is such mess.

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    I watched their video on Twitter or X (Khan's account). They have the pathetic piano music too. A tenant's hard luck story and no landlords side given.

    Richard LeFrak

    Nick this is where Beadles About should be countering this load of bollox with a landlords point of view instead of sitting on the fence...


    I agree Peter. But for me there will only ever be one Beadles About and he's dead. Sadly what we have in the shape of Ben is a sorry excuse!

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    The fact is, London has got significantly worse under Khan and he should be held fully accountable.

    Bring in your rent controls, but when it causes the obvious result, he should be facing jail time because there’s enough evidence from prior measures that it achieves the opposite of making things more affordable in the long term.

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    These hate gangs will never stop till landlords and their children are in cozy camps where they are concentrated together so they can implement their FINAL SOLUTION


    I think they won't stop until they have transferred all ownership rights from landlord to tenant .

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    Tricia. Selective Licensing is ridiculous it was supposed to be for only 3 parts of problem Borough’s. Ealing reintroduced such a Scheme only in July last year as they had done for previous 5 year terms.
    However Rogue Housing Secretary comes along later same year and makes it Borough wide image that level of interference. It doesn’t make that much difference to me because I was unfortunate enough to have been caught in areas they picked before and already had Licenses so unfair to keep moving the goal posts.
    Don’t forget I was required to have HMO Mandatory licenses since 2006, following John Prescott’s 2004 Act.
    Which has been licensed and re-licensed 4 times & on going while other Borough’s do have similar requirements or any at all until years later if still not the case, no equal treatment before the law.
    Also don’t forget the Additional Licensing Schemes to catch the one’s in between.
    Mr James Shack video on Buy 2 Let is very good and worth a look but he didn’t mention Licensing at all, he missed that big cost but he proved its not a viable business investment anymore in personal names even without the extra cost of licensing Applications and Thousands in Compliance Costs & Certification’s

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    Steve. Khan certainly has destroyed London with 20 mph because of the rubbish Asphalt Surfacing laid under his watch. Roads ravelling away and full of pot holes in less than a year, so introduced 20 mph to try to save the surface, it increase journey time and Congestion no end ask any driver, further to this blocking off Roads doubling the traffic on Roads already full what do anyone think would happen.
    Then Charge for the Congestion he caused.
    Now ULEZ he’s at it again £12.50 pd to crease people already struggling, even though 65% of Consultation were against + ushered thousands of voters to one side apparently didn’t count.
    Does he not know one Cow emissions for a year is equal to a normal size car doing 33k kilometres, so that’s me for 3 years driving, but he’s going to save the Planet, anyway just pay & pollute away it will be fine.
    Now poking his nose into Private Landlords Business does he not understand the word Private, financed with personal money & financed at great risk.

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    Why is it that these guys are only concerned about the renters?Home owners with a mortgage have also seen their mortgages go up by 400 or 600 or more. Will he go to the banks and ask for mortgage control. Don't think so. Landlords are an easy target to bash

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    • A JR
    • 17 August 2023 16:02 PM

    Yes, and tenants are fast realizing it’s Gov and unhelpful politicized charities that they need to bash!

  • Mohammad Kamran  Iqbal

    When costs increase it’s the customer that has to pay. Only way rent is controlled by reducing interest rates or placing a system where by mortgage payments are low.


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