A housing charity has responded to the government’s announcement of its Renters’ (Reform) Bill.
Shelter, which aids people facing homelessness across the UK, urged the government to move forward with the plans last week after figures revealed that homelessness was rising.
The bill, which Housing Secretary Michael Gove is introducing to Parliament, will see the abolition of Section 21 of the 1988 Housing Act, which allows landlords to enact a “no-fault” eviction - giving tenants two months’ notice and no reason.
The reform bill will also allow landlords to reclaim properties from anti-social tenants.
Ben Beadle, Chief Executive of the National Residential Landlords Association, said: “We welcome the Government’s pledge to ensure landlords can swiftly recover properties from anti-social tenants and those failing to pay their rent. Plans to digitise court hearings will also improve the speed at which legitimate possession cases are processed.
“The NRLA will continue to work with the Government to ensure the detail of the Bill is fair for responsible landlords and tenants alike.”
In response to the announcement, Polly Neate, Chief Executive of Shelter, commented: “The millions of people renting in England are at last one step closer to fairer, more secure housing.
“The Renters’ (Reform) Bill is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to finally fix private renting.
“A strong bill would be a gamechanger, meaning tenants can live without fear their homes could make them sick, families feel able to put down roots in their communities, and worries about being unfairly evicted are a thing of the past.
“For far too long Shelter’s emergency advisers have helped renters facing anguish and uncertainty, paying sky-high rents in return for poor living conditions, with no protection or security if they complain.
“The Renters’ (Reform) Bill must truly deliver change for renters when it becomes law, and it should be as strong as possible with every loophole closed, so that no renter can be unfairly evicted. The government must keep renters at the forefront to make sure this bill has the teeth needed for real change.”