What is the new Renters' Reform Bill? Everything you need to know

What are the new rules for landlords? Everything you need to know about the Renters’ Reform Bill

  • Here is everything you need to know about the Renters’ Reform Bill 

More than ten million renters will no longer face the threat of ‘no fault’ evictions or a blanket ban on pet ownership under reforms being introduced to Parliament. 

Landlords will also benefit from measures making it easier to evict irresponsible or anti-social tenants and recover their property when they need to sell it or move in a family member. 

So, what exactly does the Renters’ Reform Bill entail?  How will landlords be affected by the changes?

Read on below for everything you need to know about the Renters’ Reform Bill. 

The Renters’ Reform Bill introduced by Parliament means ten million renters will no longer face the threat of ‘no fault’ evictions

What is the Renters’ Reform Bill? 

Under the Renters’ Reform Bill, it will no longer be possible to evict tenants under Section 21 of the Housing Act, which gave landlords the power to remove them without justification.

Britain’s two million landlords will now only be permitted to increase the rent once a year under the legislation and must give tenants two months’ notice when doing so. 

However, the measures have sparked concerns that many property owners will withdraw from the rental market and the housing supply crisis will deepen. 

Housing Secretary Michael Gove said: ‘Too many renters are living in damp, unsafe, cold homes, powerless to put things right, and with the threat of sudden eviction hanging over them. 

‘This Government is determined to tackle these injustices by offering a New Deal to those living in the Private Rented Sector; one with quality, affordability, and fairness at its heart. 

‘Our new laws introduced to Parliament today will support the vast majority of responsible landlords who provide quality homes to their tenants, while delivering our manifesto commitment to abolish Section 21 ‘no-fault’ evictions. 

What are the new rules for landlords? 

The new Bill also protects over two million landlords, making it easier for them to recover properties when they need to – so they can sell their property if they want to, move in a close family member, or when tenants deliberately do not pay rent. 

Notice periods will also be reduced where tenants have been irresponsible – for example breaching their tenancy agreement or causing damage to the property. 

Housing Secretary Michael Gove said the reforms ‘will support the vast majority of responsible landlords who provide quality homes to their tenants’

The reforms will strengthen powers to evict anti-social tenants, broadening the disruptive and harmful activities that can lead to eviction and making it quicker to evict a tenant acting anti-socially. 

Although the reform will benefit landlords in certain ways, they will also now be held responsible for proving why any requests from tenants to have pets are unreasonable.

Owen Sharp, chief executive of Dogs Trust, said: ‘The new measures introduced are a potential game-changer for responsible dog owners who rent.

‘For too long, people living in rented accommodation have not been able to enjoy the benefits and companionship of a pet just because of the type of housing they live in.’

Will the Renters’ Reform Bill transform the letting market? 

To ensure the new tenancy systems works for landlords and tenants, it will be introduced alongside a reformed courts process. 

For the minority of evictions that do end up in the courts, more of the process will be made digital in an attempt to reduce any possible delays.

Critics also suggested that scrapping no-fault evictions could make properties harder to rent for some tenants. 

The reforms could potentially see more people allowed to own pets in rental homes, as landlords must now prove why any requests from tenants to have pets are unreasonable (File image)

Matthew Lesh, of the Institute of Economic Affairs think-tank, said: ‘Landlords will inevitably be more selective about who they offer properties to and charge higher rents when they cannot quickly evict bad tenants. That is likely to disproportionately hurt those who are poorer, younger, and from minority communities.

‘New eviction rules and burdensome regulatory standards will only worsen the rental property shortage and record-high rents. The housing crisis won’t be solved by fiddling with rental rules.’

Ben Beadle, chief executive of the National Residential Landlords Association, warned: ‘Responsible landlords need to be confident that when Section 21 ends, where they have a legitimate reason, they will be able to repossess their properties as quickly as possible.

‘Without this assurance, the Bill will only exacerbate the rental housing supply crisis many tenants now face.’

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