Landlord Law Newsround #298

There are also many adverts forbidding pets.

Gove to outlaw rental bans on families.

Michael Gove yesterday announced that he intends to extend the Renters Reform Bill to now include any discrimination against families and benefit recipients and he wants this to include Scotland and Wales too. He has said

We know this is a priority we share with the Scottish government, and would send a clear message to providers across the whole of Great Britain.

The Scottish Government has responded

We are aware of the UK government’s plans to introduce a ban on excluding those in receipt of benefits and those who have children, and welcome this proposal. We will work with the UK government as it develops its plans to consider how best to protect these groups in Scotland.

They do mention that it must also include ways that the UK government to re asses the freezing of Local Housing Allowances that are still at 2020 levels.

A welcome change, no doubt.  However, one wonders why these issues were left out in the first place – the bill has been in development for years!

Increased eviction costs looming for landlords

From the 1st August tenants will be able to get free early legal advice on housing, debt and welfare benefits issues before going to court as well as on the day of court. Currently, they only get this on the day of the actual hearing. The new Housing Loss Prevention Advice Service will replace the Housing Possession Court Duty Service, which now only offers ‘on the day’ emergency advice. The likely hood is that a tenant could end up getting full legal aid.

This means that it could potentially stop landlords from taking legal action for fear of a £15,000 costs bill (the approx cost of a one-day trial) if they lose their possession claim hearing.

Paul Sowerbutts, head of legal action at Landlord Action says

 This scheme makes it more likely for a case to go to a full day trial – tenants can cause more mischief and are at a significant advantage. If they lose the case, they don’t have to pay costs.

He also says that this will make it much more difficult for the smaller landlords who only have one or two properties. One landlord commented that this is now weighted against the landlord as the new system is not means-tested for the tenant, whereas a landlord has to pay for representation.

New builds save on running costs

The Home Builders Federation has maintained that new build homes will save an average of £135 a month on running costs under the new energy price cap. They go further to compare the saving against an older style house of comparable size and claim that the running costs would be £183 cheaper.

Their analysis claims that new homes use 55% less energy and 60% less carbon than older properties. 85% of their new builds achieve an A, B or C EPC rating compared to just 4% of older properties.

They now want to go one step further and are calling on the government to work with lenders to offer green mortgages now that EPCs are providing an indication of running costs.  Claiming that improved mortgage deals should be on offer for environmentally greener homes. Furthermore, new homes emit 71% less carbon than the average older property.

Neil Jefferson of HBF says

As mortgage affordability gets tougher, rental costs increase and the country’s need for homes grows increasingly desperate, lenders and government must review affordability assessments in consideration of these numbers to support more people to get onto the housing ladder.


PRS reform legislation to cost landlords just £10 a year, claim campaigners
Big council looks at selective licencing to clamp down on bad landlords
Rental supply crisis going from ‘bad to disastrous’
London’s private rental sector slashed – new figures
Law student wins deposit court case again landlord
Up & Up – New records (again) as rent soar skywards
Renters Reform Bill – is the government having ‘second’ thoughts?

Newsround will be back next week.

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