By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies to enhance your experience.
Graham Awards


Bank accuses landlords of evicting older tenants in record numbers

The Co-Op Bank, which is leading a campaign alongside charity Shelter, claims a Section 21 notice is presented to an older private renter every 16 minutes.

The bank has funded research commissioned by Shelter which claims that 28 per cent of private tenants over the age of 55 – which equates to 400,000 people - “live in fear of being evicted by their landlord.”

And the bank says a third of all private renters say, the last time they moved, it took them longer than the statutory two months notice period to find a new privately rented home.


Now that Parliament is back from its summer break, the Bank and Shelter are warning that what they call “delays” to the Renters Reform Bill are harming the health of thousands of older tenants. 

The research apparently shows that 25 per cent of renters aged over 55 say worrying about eviction is negatively impacting their mental or physical health, while a similar number one in four claim housing problems or worries had made them feel physically sick in the past year.  

The two campaigning organisations say 19 per cent of adult private renters in England are over 55 - this up by 31 per cent in the past decade. 

Nick Slape, Chief Executive Officer at The Co-operative Bank, says: “Fighting inequality across the UK is extremely important to our customers, and that’s why we’re campaigning for better rights for renters alongside Shelter. 

“We know the private rented system in this country needs urgent reform and this new research shows just how desperate the situation has become. 

“Together with our partner Shelter we are calling on the government to prioritise the Renters Reform Bill now, to protect tenants across the country and deliver lasting change.”

And Polly Neate, Chief Executive of Shelter, adds: “Older renters may already be retired or planning for retirement at this point in their lives. They shouldn’t have knots in their stomachs, constantly afraid that their landlord is going to kick them out of their home for no reason. 

“We hear from hundreds of over-55s who have worked for decades in search of safety and security later in life. It’s a disgrace that so many are being stripped of a stable home by the gross injustice of Section 21 no-fault evictions.  

“Instead of forcing older renters to pay over the odds for often shoddy rentals that leave them sick with worry, the government must keep its word, and get the Renters Reform Bill over the line. Tenants are tired of waiting for a system that makes private renting safe and fair for all.” 

Want to comment on this story? Our focus is on providing a platform for you to share your insights and views and we welcome contributions.
If any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.
Please help us by reporting comments you consider to be unduly offensive so we can review and take action if necessary. Thank you.

  • icon

    It would be more useful if the government funded large amounts of purpose built Social retirement housing for the over 55s.

    Ian Deaugustine

    Precisely, this poor chap is confused: it is not the duty of a private landlord to care for older people, but it is of the responsible government to create the conditions for those over 55 to have a decent life.

  • icon

    Oh dear. What a load of rubbish if you haven’t sorted out your life at 55 you are as big a waste of time as Shelter and Mr Nick Slape the CEO of the Co-op Bank, who have destroyed the Bank since taking over, it was a sad day the Co-op Bank split from the Co-op Group in recent times. I have been a loyal Customer of the Co-op for over 50 years and Mr N Slape looks like its demise.
    I used to have all my Properties Insured with them but that fell away over last 15 years because they threw their business away.
    I can now no longer have any confidence in the Bank that I’m heavily invested in so very sad.
    I will tell you what is a disgrace that Shelter & the Co-op think I owe any 55 year olds a stable home or any kind of a home, having worked over 60 years and still working (ask my tenants they’ll put you right) so do you want to know what is a disgrace, it’s attacking Private Landlords who have supplied quality affordable homes to millions of people of all Walks of life for decades.
    Why is it always about other peoples mental health and well-being, not one thought for 2’500’000, private landlords who have sacrificed and contributed so much yet suffer in silence while paying Billions in taxes with no Representation at local or Government level.


    Exactly. No mention on landlords’ mental health issues whatsoever, or any other contributions.


    Life doesn't always go to plan so I'm not sure saying someone is a waste of time if they haven't got life sorted by the age of 55 is strictly fair. Lots of people, especially men, find themselves with nothing through no real fault of their own in late middle age. Typical scenario is he has spent years working all hours to pay for the mortgage on the family home and to pay for family holidays, school trips, nice stuff for his kids, etc. When they leave school wifey suddenly says she's wanted a divorce for years and was just waiting for the kids to finish their exams.
    After the divorce settlement he is left with nowhere near enough to buy anywhere decent.
    Alternatively they get divorced when the kids are younger and he has to carry on paying for the marital home until the youngest child leaves education. The house is then supposed to be sold and the equity split. By that stage they're over 50 and suddenly realise £60K is a really awkward amount of money. Not enough to buy anything without relocating hundreds of miles but enough to remove any help with anything.

    Then there is injury or ill health that can well and truly mess life up. Either their own health or having to become a carer for someone else.

  • icon

    Jo my friend it is fair to say it, it’s not the fault of private landlords that they want a divorce and private landlords are not immune either.
    We all have those life costs as well although don’t know if they are all entitled to holidays they can’t afford.
    So it’s Divorce laws they should be Campaigning to change not the introduction of RRB.
    Obviously financial gain is sometimes the main reason for Divorce otherwise they wouldn’t be so smart anyway that’s another subject.
    The Renter’s Reform Bill is the Cause of all those extra evictions referred to and no other reason but no mention of this in this biased despicable article.
    Polly talking about getting it over the line, what that means is the end of the Private Rented Sector and collapse of the economy. Get it over the line indeed she must be watching too much Rugby.
    It was good for Polly to have been handed the soft job by her predecessor Collin Robb ?.

  • icon

    Are we talking about the same country? I welcome over 55s and even allow them to take occupation, in my HMOs, without the first months rent and deposit. In my area north of Birmingham, the over 55s make the best tenants, compared to younger tenants. The older tenants pay they stay and rarely complain. I cannot remember the last time an over 55 applied to me for accommodation. So where are all the evictions of the over 55s taking place?

    I suspect if any over 55 applies for accommodation in my area, the social landlords snap them up for the very same reasons I do, they make a good long-term tenants. Yet social landlords are funded to provide accommodation for the vulnerable but avoid the difficult to manage tenants i.e. under 25s.

    Jim Haliburton, The HMO daddy

  • Ian Deaugustine

    This poor chap is confused: it is not the duty of a private landlord to care for older people, but it is of the responsible government to create the conditions for those over 55 to have a decent life.

  • icon

    is the eviction rate of over 55s any worse than for under 55s? Are we talking about single people in HMOs or people in single family homes? I would like more information to understand what Shelter believe is going on. Are more HMO LLs selling up - one HMO could easily result in multiple S21s of over 55s. Or is Shelter trying to promote a picture of everyone's grandparents being made homeless to tug at our heartstrings? Bottomline - the forthcoming RRB is CAUSING S21s to be issued.

  • icon

    Polly has made the classic mistake of equating the PRS with security 🤷‍♂️ It has never been, nor ever will be secure!! Unlike housing association’s and councils our individual lives can change, which means our future intentions change… and we SELL 🎉🎉


    Precisely Simon, but they want to control OUR properties absolutely and they are NOT the owners of those properties.

  • Peter Why Do I Bother

    Another PR drama from Polly and the Slaphead from the Co Op, let me put this point of view across.

    One of my tenants Jim has lived in a two bed apartment of mine for 30years, I inherited him from the previous owner. I let him stay and will continue to let him stay for as long as he wants, he has had a new kitchen and bathroom the garden he access too is manicured every month and I do not cause him any drama and he causes me very little drama.

    He is in his 60's and very happy, I charge Jimbo 350 a month and will not put it up until he has decided enough. Notice Polly, Twomey or Gove do not mention these cases do they....


    I find my older tenants are very low maintenance. No dramas, no silly demands. I bought flats specifically for 2 of them.
    Jezzer had been renting one of our small shared houses with a couple of his middle aged mates when he decided to go to Thailand and bring back a wife. She got pregnant, his mates gave notice, so joint tenancy - bye, bye all of them. Except he couldn't find anywhere due to affordability multipliers and a less than spotless financial history. So find 2 more housemates, do another 6 month tenancy, then the baby will exist and the Council can step in. What a deluded thought that was! When the baby arrived and the joint tenancy had ended, so homeless through no fault of their own (technically), the Council offered them a room in a B&B 50 miles away. He was over 50, has literacy difficulties and had a low paid job. Better than minimum wage but certainly not enough to pay for 100 miles a day commute. The idea of leaving his wife with very limited English language with a newborn baby in a rough B&B 50 miles away was horrendous. The likelihood of getting a job in a different town was slim. 50 is too young to be chucked on the scrapheap. So we asked if he wanted us to look for a suitable flat that would fit Housing Benefit level rent. We found an ex Council ground floor flat a few minutes cycle ride from his work. His son is now nearly 13 and they all still live in the flat.
    Marty was our plasterer for years. Became homeless after a relationship breakup. Lived in his van for a while. Rented a couple of rooms from another landlord for a while, got evicted when that landlord sold. We were chatting one day while he was plastering and he described his ideal home. Somewhere close to the sea and some shops with parking. There happened to be a really run down flat with a short lease in his perfect location so I bought it, renovated it and extended the lease. He assures me he won't be leaving there until he's in a pine box. He's now too ill to work (heart and knee problems) but the rent is at LHA level so it's sustainable. The capital growth on that one has been very good and he keeps the place absolutely immaculate.

    I'm certainly not a charity but if I can operate in a way that is mutually beneficial I will. Lowish rent for a long term low hassle tenant seems like a reasonable exchange. I could charge more for both of those units but by the time I've factored in voids and reletting costs it's uncertain if I would make any more profit. So I'm happy for them to live there as long as it's working in a mutually beneficial way for all of us.

  • icon

    I like my older tenants I get on with them much better than I do with the younger '' entitled'' ones

  • jeremy clarke

    When taking on a tenancy in the PRS, every tenant should put some thought to what happens if....

    * What happens if my landlord dies?
    * What happens if my landlord needs to sell?
    * What happens if I don't pay my rent?
    The PRS is not and has never been housing for life, that is teh job of Government and Local Authorities, the fact that neither organisation (term used lightly), could organise a p**s up in a brewery is not the fault of private landlords who are simply not charities. What about the most misleading charity of all shelter, putting their hands into that very deep bank account that is subsidised by gifts from tax payers via government every year, and building some social housing for those who concern them most?

  • icon

    The government needs to create more social housing and stop blaming LL for everything.


    The government needs to fully overhaul the Social Housing system.
    Councils and HAs should charge a minimum of LHA so they can actually afford to maintain the housing stock they have. How many Local Authorities are on the verge of bankruptcy? Why should people earning above average salaries pay half price rent just because they have struck lucky and somehow got a Social tenancy?

    Building large quantities of retirement housing would free up large numbers of family size homes in areas that already have schools, doctors, shops, etc. Ideally build these retirement homes on the existing Council estates so people can stay close to friends and support networks. Retirement housing is higher density than family size houses so parcels of land that aren't financially viable for family homes are often perfect for retirement housing

  • icon

    This is what Socialism causes, an ever increasing need for more more more....
    We are already at 55% of the population take more from the Tax payer than they contribute so there's probably only 35-40% that actually contribute money to run the state with all this free stuff....
    If you ever go out to dinner with 10 people and 60% pay nothing how often would you go out to dinner.... you won't, so now the Top 10% pay 54% of the Tax are slowly working less, earning less or leaving the country so the debts are rising and the free stuff has, as all Socialist states end, with not enough money to run them.... a cycle of decline

  • icon

    Research from a leading housing charity has shown that babies under six months old have had their rent increased three times in the last year by greedy landlords
    Further research from another housing charity has proved that Landlords are turning up at maternity hospital and serving eviction notices on new born babies in their cots with false documentation

  • John Wathen

    It’s high time politicians, councils & banks like the coop realised they need the Private rental sector an awful lot more than us landlords need it. Interest rates are still rising and there are far less complicated & more lucrative ways for us to invest our hard earned savings. Social housing is a joke and we are being made the scapegoats. They hold up the rogue landlords as typical when the opposite is true. If they don’t back off now we will all back out & who will they blame then for the resulting unmitigated disaster?


Please login to comment

MovePal MovePal MovePal
sign up