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Shelter urged to go back to drawing board on tenancy proposal

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) has urged Shelter to go back to the drawing board after calling for England to adopt Scotland’s model of indefinite tenancies in the private rented sector.

Shelter released a report yesterday suggesting that England should follow Scotland’s lead and provide private tenants with indefinite security of tenure, meaning "no-fault" evictions will no longer be possible.

The private residential tenancy rules introduced north of the border in December 2017 brought an end to fixed-term rentals, meaning leases will effectively be open-ended.


These new laws have led to unprecedented security of tenure to private renters, with landlords in Scotland now needing a good reason to evict tenants.

But Shelter has failed to recognise key differences between England and Scotland, according to David Smith, policy director for the RLA.

Responding to Shelter’s report, Smith said: “The only reason the Scottish model has worked is because a properly funded and staffed housing court was established to cope with the dramatic increase in repossession cases needing to be heard.

“Across England and Wales it takes an average of over five months for landlords to repossess properties through the courts. This is not good enough.

“We call on Shelter to back the RLA’s plans for a dedicated housing court that can process repossession claims in legitimate circumstances without frustrating landlords. Simply tinkering with the existing courts will not work.”

Smith criticised Shelter for claiming that changes in Scotland have not affected the supply of homes for rent.

“Shelter has used figures from before the changes were introduced,” he added. “As the latest data from the Royal Institution for Chartered Surveyors notes clearly, whilst the demand for new homes to rent has increased considerably in Scotland, new landlord instructions have fallen, providing less choice for tenants.”

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Poll: Do you think England should adopt Scotland’s model of indefinite tenancies in the private rented sector?


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    The current SNP war on landlords is really hurting the good tenants, who were always welcome to stay as long as they liked. Availability of good properties has plummeted, rents up 30% for the best properties, with up to 17 viewers begging to get them The SNP's latest wheeze is to push for rent controls, which will push more landlords into the short term rental arena and further reduce the availability of long term rentals. What the SNP and their loony pals in Shelter, Labour, Greens etc. are actually doing is REDUCING the chances of decent tenants getting long term homes. Such legislation only helps the rogue tenants, but that has long been the only group who might need "help" from Shelter and need any form of compulsion in the property letting market.

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    '' No fault evictions '' no, section 21 is the accelerated eviction process , in 30 yrs as a landlord the only times i have used section 21 is to evict bad non paying tenants as quickly as possible, i would say the percentage of true '' no fault evictions'' would be around 5% the rest being rouge tenant evictions.

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    I have used a section 21 about 3 times in 35 years, but that isnt the question. the queston is .
    stop messing about there comes a time when a business is not worth doing , and that time has come . stay in and feel the pain.get out and enjoy the money

    • 18 June 2019 23:24 PM

    Or not get out but deleverage and sell off and convert to lodgers at multiple residential properties.
    No S24 applicable.
    There is no restriction as to how many residential properties a LL may own.
    Converting an AST lettings portfolio to a residential portfolio with lodgers remains an eminent strategy.
    It will be a bit like an HMO portfolio.
    But lodgers tend to be less troublesome as they have few tenant rights.
    So no massive rent arrears and long and costly eviction processes.
    I am converting to the lodger strategy.
    It is just unfortunate for me that I will be barely able to afford ONE residential property!!
    But many AST lettings LL have substantial equity and could easily convert many former properties to residential.
    Such LL should find a reduction in property numbers will make managing lodgers far more cost effective.


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