In 2019 the government sought views for a consultation titled: “A new deal for renting: resetting the balance of rights and responsibilities between landlords and tenants.” The consultation sought views on implementing the government’s decision to remove Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 and improving section 8 eviction grounds.
The key points from the Depaul UK submission to this consultation were:
- In the twelve months up to the end of March 2019, over 57,000 people asked a local authority for help with homelessness because of the end of an AST (Assured Shorthold Tenancy). Getting rid of section 21 could mean that far fewer people become homeless because of the end of a tenancy.
- Applying ground 14A to private rented accommodation could help more survivors of domestic abuse remain in their property. Private landlords may need support if using ground 14A to ensure that doing so does not result in more harm for survivors.
- The proposed grounds would not be an appropriate substitute for Section 21 for homelessness accommodation. Unfortunately, as a last resort, we sometimes have to serve Section 21 notices if a tenant who no longer needs support or exceeds an age limit refuses to move out of our accommodation. We have suggested ways in which the proposals could be revised to take account of this type of accommodation.
- The proposals could result in landlords becoming less willing to let to people who have been homeless or are at risk of homelessness. This effect could be mitigated by incentivising more.
Download the submission here: Depaul UK submission – A new deal for renting