Private renters gathered outside Parliament this week to tell the Government that the private rental sector (PRS) can’t go back to how it was before the pandemic. They have demanded that it delivers on its promise to end unfair evictions.
20 renters and members of the Renters’ Reform Coalition met MPs, including Stephen Timms, chair of the Work & Pensions Committee, and Lloyd Russell Moyle, chair of the All-party Parliamentary Group on Renters and Rental Reform. Renters told MPs about their experiences and asked them to improve private renting.
Right now, renters can be evicted without a reason by their landlords, under Section 21 of the 1988 Housing Act. The notice period landlords must give has been extended during the pandemic but will revert to 2 months on 1st October.
The Government pledged to end Section 21 in 2019. The Government has also promised a White Paper this year to set out its plans to reform the private rented sector.
The Coalition is calling on the Government to:
- End unfair evictions and introduce open ended secure tenancies
- Introduce a national register of landlords to raise standards
- Stop illegal evictions
- End discrimination in rented homes
- Tackle the affordability crisis
Sue James, chair of the Renters’ Reform Coalition, comments: “The pandemic has painfully reminded us of the importance of a safe and secure home, yet the lifting of the eviction restrictions takes that basic need further away. Private renters cannot go back to the status quo – of high rents, unsafe homes and insecure tenancies. It’s time to make private renting better, not worse.
“More than two years since the government’s original pledge to abolish Section 21, renters are still waiting for a fairer system. Now that Parliament has returned, we have a once in a generation opportunity to ensure the private rented sector is secure and safe.”