The Government published its long expected White Paper into the Private Rented Sector (PRS). Entitled A fairer private rented sector it proposes a range of matters that the Government are considering including in its Bill, The Renters Reform.
Our main points of contention are:-
- Loss of the S21, and the potential unintended consequences
- Periodic tenancies/2 months’ notice by tenant, and the intention to convert all tenancies to periodic after 12 months, thereby removing the S21 on all existing tenancies – retrospective legislation is unusual and could lead to a wholesale ‘clear out’ of dubious tenants.
A potential consequence of periodic tenancies is that landlords will be responsible for the council tax, unless amended.
Another consequence will be for student landlords pulling out, forcing students into more expensive purpose-built accommodation
- The call to follow the Decent Homes Standard, when we don’t know what the revisions will be; nor do we know the final version of MEES/EPC’s
We also call for:-
- Some form of Rental Safety Certificate/Property MoT
- A tenants’ passport, showing their history
- More training for landlords and agents: some of the questions on our help line are very basic. Implement the ROPA report
- That non-self-contained rooms in an HMO should not be subject to an individual Council Tax rating
- Recognise abandoned properties. Re-write part 3 of the 2016 Act, not reject it
- When the Decent Homes Standard becomes law, abandon wholesale licensing
- More resources for Local Authorities, not even more legislation for them to ignore.
But we applaud
- The determination to review the courts, and eviction process. We call for courts to have Service Level Agreements,
- The Property Portal
- The Property Ombudsman, but we question why a new on is required when we have two already