2023 has been a strong year for Stephensons Rural and Boulton & Cooper in terms... Read more
TO RENT OR NOT TO RENT IN THE PRIVATE RENTED SECTOR
Many of you will have read the article by Rod Cordingley last month on the question of whether to rent or not your farmland. I would now like to look at the Private Residential Rented Sector and how the impending Rental Reform Bill may impact your decision-making in the future.
It is claimed by the current government that “The Renters (Reform) Bill will improve the system for both the 11 million private renters and 2.3 million landlords in England.” They go on to state that The Renters (Reform) Bill will:
- Abolish section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions and move to a simpler tenancy structure
- Introduce more comprehensive possession grounds so landlords can still recover their property (including where they wish to sell their property or move in close family) and to make it easier to repossess properties where tenants are at fault, for example in cases of anti-social behaviour and repeat rent arrears;
- Provide stronger protections against backdoor eviction by ensuring tenants are able to appeal excessively above-market rents which are purely designed to force them out. As now, landlords will still be able to increase rents to market price for their properties and an independent tribunal will make a judgement on this, if needed.
- Introduce a new Private Rented Sector Ombudsman which will provide fair, impartial, and binding resolution to many issues and prove quicker, cheaper, and less adversarial than the court system;
- Create a Privately Rented Property Portal to help landlords understand their legal obligations and demonstrate compliance (giving good landlords confidence in their position), alongside providing better information to tenants to make informed decisions when entering into a tenancy agreement. It will also support local councils – helping them target enforcement activity where it is needed most; and
- Give tenants the right to request a pet in the property, which the landlord must consider and cannot unreasonably refuse. To support this, landlords will be able to require pet insurance to cover any damage to their property.
As with all government reforms, the devil will be in the detail and the timing of when such reforms will be enacted into law. We understand that it will take 18 months or so to go through the two Houses and be passed into legislation. In between times we have a general election on the horizon, where housing will undoubtedly be a hot political item.
In the meantime, we would advise all landlords to take appropriate professional advice to ensure their property (s) are up to speed with all current legislation, including Housing Health & Safety Rating Systems (HHSRS), so that you are prepared to adapt and meet the future challenges.
Please contact us to arrange an initial consultation.
Henry Scott MRICS
Tel: 01653 692151
Review of 2023
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As YAMS celebrates its 10th anniversary, the team at Stephensons Rural look forward to welcoming... Read more