The Rental Reform White Paper 2022

The middle of June saw the much anticipated release of the Rental Reform White Paper and in this blog we summarise everything landlords need to know.

The aim of the Rental Reform White Paper is to address and reform the rental sector in the UK which has historically been viewed as imbalanced and unfair.

The Rental Reform White Paper effectively lists 12 points that the government want to address and enforce which in turn split across 5 topics; these are as follows:

Better Security for Tenants

As already widely commented on, we will see the abolition of no-fault Section 21 evictions and the creation of a more secure tenancy structure. To counter this, landlords will have a simpler and clearer set of possession grounds which will make the process simpler. Tied into this will be increased work with the Ministry of Justice and HMCTS to clear the current legal backlog. Finally, there will also be more protection from rent increases for tenants, meaning this will only be possible once a year with the use of Rent Review clauses abolished. Tenants will now also have improved scope to challenge these increases through the First Tier Tribunal.

A Positive Rental Experience for Tenants

Landlords and agents will no longer be able to ban or discount families with children, or people in receipt of Universal Credit / other benefits. Furthermore, all tenants will now have the right to have any pet requests appropriately considered. There will also be work on more innovative deposit solutions which will afford tenants the ability to rent without significant outlay, while balancing security for landlords.

Safe and Decent Homes

Here, the Rental Reform White Paper requires all PRS homes to meet the Decent Homes Standard. Additionally, where required, quality improvements will be expedited.

Improved Dispute Resolution

There will be an establishment of a single ombudsman which will make it easier for tenants to establish and pursue accountability in any situations of conflict.

Compliance & Enforcement

To improve this element of the PRS, the Rental Reform White Paper will introduce a local property portal as a single go to location for tenants, landlords, and local authorities for all property information. Finally, there will also be a focus on increasing local authority enforcement powers to tackle rogue landlords.

Our Take

The Rental Reform White Paper has certainly set out to bring about much needed changes and improvements to the sector but understandably there is fear and uncertainty in the market as a result.  As it stands we will need to see further information about how the changes will be deployed before we can truly understand their impact. Plus, with in the region of 2 years before these regulations come into force, there could certainly be some twists and turns ahead.

If you are a Landlord looking for further advice, please contact us through www.lyvly.uk/landlords and one of the team will be happy to come back to you.  

We will be publishing further updates on this and other topics as and when we have them.

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