Renters Reform Bill 'will not become law' due to snap election

The Renters (Reform) Bill, which is designed to ban landlords from evicting tenants for no reason, will not become law - with not enough time to pass the legislation before parliament is dissolved this Friday.

Related topics:  Renters Reform Bill
Amy Loddington | Online Editor, Financial Reporter
24th May 2024
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This week Rishi Sunak announced a General Election would take place on 4th July, meaning that MPs will not sit in parliament until the election after this week. While some bills, including the Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill, are being debated before parliament is prorogued, the Renters (Reform) Bill is not on the timetable to be discussed.

Ben Beadle, chief executive of the National Residential Landlords Association, said:

“If true, it is hugely disappointing that this Bill will not now make it into law. The news comes despite the fact that the Bill was in a state which would work for tenants and responsible landlords.

“There has been too much dither and delay in government, and a failure to be clear about how to ensure changes would work in practice. Critically, the market now faces yet more crippling uncertainty about what the future of the private rented sector looks like.

“Reforming the sector will be an important issue for the next government and we will work constructively with them to ensure changes are fair and workable. That means empowering tenants to challenge rogue and criminal landlords whilst ensuring the confidence of responsible landlords to stay in the market.”

Allison Thompson, National Lettings Managing Director, Leaders Romans Group, said:

“We are deeply disappointed that the much-anticipated Renters (Reform) Bill will not pass into legislation due to the upcoming general election on July 4th. This Bill has been in development for several years, aimed at addressing critical issues that impact both tenants and landlords.

“The Bill's failure to pass into law is a significant setback. While many of the Bill's provisions were contentious - including concerns over periodic tenancies, the abolition of Section 21 and the associated issues of court delays along with the inclusion of the right to request a pet - we believed that continued dialogue and amendments would have addressed the concerns of all stakeholders, ultimately benefiting the rental market.

“LRG has consistently advocated for a balanced approach that protects both tenants' rights and landlords' interests. The failure to pass the Renters Reform Bill highlights the need for comprehensive housing policies that provide stability and address the critical issues facing the sector, principally the undersupply of good-quality rental homes.

“As the UK faces a housing crisis, it is imperative that the incoming government prioritises housing policies that ensure stability and long-term solutions. Over the past 13 years, there have been 16 different housing ministers, demonstrating a lack of continuity and commitment. We urge the next administration to place housing at the heart of its agenda, providing the consistency and long-term focus that the sector desperately needs.”

Timothy Douglas, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Propertymark, comments:

“The legislation was introduced very late on and whilst attempting to please everyone, it failed to please anyone.

“Many agents will be relieved that the current government’s plans to meddle with fixed term tenancies and reforming eviction grounds with little realisation of the unintended consequences will no longer pass, but this is soon outweighed by a sense of uncertainty and apprehension as to what the next government will do.

“Propertymark remain committed to engaging with politicians from all sides and will continue to call for agent regulation, tax reform, more resources for the courts and enforcement authorities, as well as ensuring renting property retains flexible tenancy options that have made the private rented sector the success it is today.”

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