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Tenancies Reform Bill Fails On Technicality


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Revenge Eviction Bill Fails To Progress Through Parliament Due To Technicality

Revenge Eviction Bill Fails To Progress Through Parliament Due To Technicality

Revenge Eviction Bill Fails To Progress
Through Parliament Due To Technicality

There was relief all round for UK private rental sector (PRS) landlords on Friday 28th November 2014, when the controversial Tenancies Reform Bill, failed to progress past its first reading in the House of Commons.

The Tenancies Reform Bill has also been called the Revenge Eviction Bill by commentators who argue that some PRS landlords remove tenants from privately rented properties because the tenant’s had requested repairs be done to the rental property.

Rather than failing on a vote, the Tenancies Reform Bill, proposed by Liberal Democrat MP Sarah Teather, failed on a technicality after MP’s Philip Davies and Christopher Chope chose to filibuster the presentation, as parliamentary procedure dictates that only Bills which remain unopposed after 2.30pm may make further progress.

The debate started at around 9.30am and continued throughout the session as MP’s decided to talk the proposal out rather than allow a vote to take place. MP’s who wanted to support the Tenancies Reform Bill attempted to bring forward a closure motion, in order to end the debate and call for an early vote, however for a successful majority, at least 100 MP’s must support it, but the motion was only supported by 60 MP’s and the reading of the Bill was subsequently ended.In order for the Tenancies Reform Bill to become law by the next general election in 2015, it must pass a second reading stage in the House of Commons, but it remains unclear if the Government intend to grant more parliamentary time to debate the Tenancies (Reform) Bill to try to force it through.

Revenge or retaliatory tenant evictions are still in the minority of all UK possession claims made by landlords and it is far from fair that the majority of morally upstanding landlords should be expected to alter sound legal business practices because of criticism drawn by a few rogue operators within the UK’s private rented sector.

It is widely agreed that UK PRS and social tenants do need to be protected from the small minority of rogue landlords, but conversely, good, reliable, law abiding landlords also need protection from tenants who know how to abuse the system.

Tenant evictions happen for a number of reasons and are the last resort for many PRS landlords, who are often forced to endure increasing rent arrears, anti social behaviour and rental property damage before they are allowed to seek possession of their rental property asset from the tenants.

The Tenancies Reform Bill wanted

  • To impose restrictions on the serving of Section 21 notices by landlords where a “hazard awareness notice” had been issued by a local authority.
  • Landlords would also be prevented from serving a section 21 notice where an improvement notice has been served on a rental property relating to category 1 or category 2 Hazards under the HHSRS rating system, or where the rental property required emergency remedial action.
  • Tenants would also be able to challenge Section 21 notices where they had complained to the landlord or local authority before the Section 21 notice was issued, but the local authority had still to decide to inspect the rental property in question.
  • Landlords would also not be allowed to serve a Section 21 notice in the first four months of any short-hold tenancy.

The Tenancies Reform Bill would be a recipe for poor tenant-landlords relations creating a loophole allowing bad tenants to remain in privately rented properties for longer, leading to an increase of rent arrears and putting further strain on local authority resources, leading to increased financial pressure on PRS landlords and longer delays for tenant eviction cases to pass through the courts.

Spokesman for the UK’s leading suppliers to landlords and the lettings industry, Legal 4 Landlords, Sim Sekhon, responded to the news stating “Thankfully the Tenancies Reform Bill didn’t pass through its first reading in the House of Commons because there wasn’t enough evidence to support the need for more Government legislation, which would have a detrimental impact on the whole of the UK’s property rental market. If UK private rented sector landlords need to evict a tenant from their rental property then they should use the services of a tenant eviction specialist like Legal 4 Landlords, to ensure that the case for possession of the rental property is done swiftly, legally and correctly without troublesome and costly errors”.

 


This was written by Mike Clarke. Posted on at 11:15 am. Filed under Eviction. Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow comments here with the RSS feed. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.