Home Improvement

What does renters reform mean for private rentals?

The Renters (Reform) Bill was included in the recent King’s speech. But what exactly is it?

This Bill was first introduced in May 2023 and had its second reading in October 2023. It should be passed into law within this parliamentary session. The main overriding purpose of the Bill was stated as being to offer renters “stronger security of tenure and better value”, and to help landlords to “regain their properties when needed”.

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One of the key aspects of the Renters Reform Bill is the planned replacement of fixed term assured shorthold tenancies with periodic assured tenancies. This will give renters better security of tenure and reduce chances of eviction.

S21 notices

These notices are used for so-called ‘No-fault evictions’ and are a leading cause of homelessness. The 2019 Conservative manifesto included a pledge to abolish these. Although still a part of the new Bill, this element may take a while yet as the Government is saying that they want to make changes to the court process first.

As well as the above, the Bill also states that the ‘Decent Homes Standard’ will be extended to the private rental sector.

Property surveys

If you are looking for property to live in or to rent out, make sure that you have a homebuyers survey carried out at an early stage in the process. A homebuyers survey is an effective way of learning about the condition of the property. There are a number of specialist firms offering this type of survey, and many have excellent online resources such as the examples seen here: https://www.samconveyancing.co.uk/homebuyers-survey.

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The Renters (Reform) Bill also includes the creation of a new property portal which will contain information on existing/prospective residential landlords, and details of all dwellings that are to be used for residential tenancies.

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