October 23, 2023 1:38 pm

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Nikka Sulton

The CEO of the National Residential Landlords Association believes that the controversial Renters Reform Bill’s success is dependent on landlords’ satisfaction. Introduced in May, the Bill is now embarking on its Second Reading in Parliament. Recent months have been marked by speculation regarding potential modifications to accommodate the demands of some Conservative backbench MPs.

Today’s events are a significant milestone in the Bill’s journey through Parliament, with the Second Reading being a crucial stage. It will undergo a lengthy process before becoming law, and it’s expected to face various discussions and potential changes along the way. The willingness of landlords to support the Bill’s provisions will play a pivotal role in its ultimate success.

NRLA leader Ben Beadle emphasizes the uncertainty around the Bill’s progress, causing challenges for landlords and renters in their future planning. He underlines the importance of securing the confidence of responsible landlords, as their support is crucial to addressing the housing shortage and benefiting tenants.

Addressing issues with the Courts is essential alongside the Bill’s progress through Parliament, as an unreformed court system could undermine the government’s planned sector changes. Ministers have pledged to improve the court system, and the NRLA will work with them to ensure these improvements are realized.

The Bill aligns with the Tories’ 2019 manifesto promise to eliminate section 21 evictions, aimed at empowering renters to hold poor landlords accountable without the fear of losing their homes.

The new Bill also aims to support over two million landlords, facilitating property recovery for various reasons, such as selling the property, accommodating close family members, or addressing issues like non-payment of rent by tenants.

The Bill proposes reduced notice periods in cases of tenant irresponsibility, such as breaching tenancy agreements or causing property damage.

Efforts to digitize more of the eviction process through a reformed court system are also part of the legislation to minimize delays.

A mandatory Ombudsman for landlords will be introduced, alongside a digital Property Portal that outlines landlord obligations, assisting tenants in making informed decisions when entering new tenancy agreements.

Tenants will have a legal right to request pets in their homes, with landlords required to consider these requests reasonably. Landlords can ask for pet insurance to cover potential property damage.

The government will also enact legislation within the Bill to extend the Decent Homes Standard to the private rented sector, prohibit blanket bans on renting to benefit recipients or families with children, enhance council enforcement powers, and require councils to report on their enforcement activities.



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