The government’s white paper on reforming the private rented sector will be published next year, according the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.
Reform of the sector, including changes to Section 21 no fault evictions were included in the 2019 Conservative election manifesto, and the Queen’s Speech earlier in the year. A white paper on the renter reforms was due this autumn with legislation to follow. The government’s proposed ‘lifetime’ tenancy deposit scheme, allowing tenants to take their deposit with them when they move properties, was also to be included.
However, the department has written to organisations being consulted on the reforms to explain the delay. According to the letter: “It is better for us to take the time to get these reforms right working in partnership with colleagues than to rush something out that misses the mark."
Groups campaigning to end Section 21, including the housing charity Shelter, have criticised the slow progress. More than 5,700 London households have been served with Section 21 notices since former prime minister Theresa May first pledged to reform the clause two years ago.
But for other in the industry, the delay is a sensible move. Isobel Thomson, of the accreditation service safeagent, which took part in a National Audit Office review of regulation in the sector said: “safeagent welcomes the clarity on when the white paper on reforms to the private rented sector will be published.
“It makes sense to wait for the findings of the National Audit Office’s review of existing regulation and exploration of key sector organisations' aspirations for private rental sector reform for the benefit of tenants and landlords.”
Read more about this story in the Landlord Today