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The ban on evictions extended for another 4 weeks and new 6 month notice periods to be in place until at least 31 March 2021.

  • Ban on evictions continues for 4 weeks taking the total ban to 6 months
  • New 6 month notice periods to be in place until at least 31 March 2021
  • Once eviction hearings restart, the judiciary will carefully prioritise the most serious cases including those involving anti-social behaviour and domestic abuse

Renters affected by coronavirus will continue to be protected after the government extended the ban on evictions for another 4 weeks, meaning in total no legal evictions will have taken place for 6 months, Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has announced today (21 August 2020).

The government also intends to give tenants greater protection from eviction over the winter by requiring landlords to provide tenants with 6 months’ notice in all bar those cases raising other serious issues such as those involving anti-social behaviour and domestic abuse perpetrators, until at least the end of March.

Propp – MPU

The government will keep these measures under review with decisions guided by the latest public health advice.

When courts do resume eviction hearings they will carefully prioritise the most egregious cases, ensuring landlords are able to progress the most serious cases, such as those involving anti-social behaviour and other crimes, as well as where landlords have not received rent for over a year and would otherwise face unmanageable debts.

The government has taken unprecedented action to support renters during the pandemic, preventing people getting into financial hardship and helping businesses to pay salaries – meaning no tenants have been evicted since the start.

As a result, according to independent research, 87% of tenants have continued to pay full rent since the start of the pandemic, with a further 8% agreeing reduced fees with their landlords.

The vast majority of landlords have shown understanding and leadership, taking action to support tenants.

With coronavirus still posing an ongoing risk to public health, the government will continue to take action where necessary to further protect households in both the private and social rented sector are supported over winter, helping to keep them safe.

Today’s extension to the stay and 6 month notice periods will ensure those most at risk are protected. If tenants are unable to afford their rent we encourage them to speak to their landlord to agree a solution, and some households may decide to consider moving.

Government will continue to work with the judiciary and stakeholders to ensure that the courts are prepared for eviction cases to be heard safely.

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick MP said:

“I know this year has been challenging and all of us are still living with the effects of COVID-19. That is why today I am announcing a further 4 week ban on evictions, meaning no renters will have been evicted for 6 months.”

“I am also increasing protections for renters – 6 month notice periods must be given to tenants, supporting renters over winter.”

“However, it is right that the most egregious cases, for example those involving anti-social behaviour or domestic abuse perpetrators, begin to be heard in court again; and so when courts reopen, landlords will once again be able to progress these priority cases.”

Case listing, including prioritisation, is a judicial function and we are working with the judiciary through the Master of the Rolls’ Working Group on possession to consider the categories of serious cases that would be prioritised when hearings resume. Further detail on those categories will be set out in due course and we will engage with key stakeholders on this.

Independent polling for the National Residential Landlords Association recently found that 87% of private tenants have paid their rent as normal throughout the pandemic so far. An additional 8% said that they had agreed a reduced rent, a rent-free period or made some other agreement with their landlord or letting agent.

The extension to the ban on evictions and prioritisation of the most serious case applies to courts in England and Wales

The intention to extend notice periods to 6 month applies to England only.

On 5 June the government announced that the suspension of housing possession cases in the courts had been extended by a further 2 months.

To support those on Universal Credit or Housing Benefit in the private rented sector, Local Housing Allowance rates have been set to the 30th percentile of rents in each area. For those who require additional support Discretionary Housing Payments are available.

As announced at the spending round for 2020/21 there is already £180 million in Discretionary Housing Payments for Local authorities to distribute for supporting renters with housing costs in the private and social rented sectors.

We remain committed to bringing forward reforms to provide greater security to tenants, but it is only right that this is balanced with an assurance that landlords are able to recover their properties where they have valid reasons to do so. This is vital to ensuring the future supply of good quality housing in the rented sector.

We will bring forward legislation in due course, once the urgencies of responding to the pandemic have passed, to deliver a better deal for renters and a fairer more effective rental market.

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    5 Comments

    1. This government continues with its outragous anti landlord policies.

      Preventing evictions for one year will result in individuals suffering the potentially £20,000/£25,000 loss in rent.

      Whilst people like Jenrick make their easy money elsewhere they are happy to hang landlords out to dry because most landlords are normal people with no power who have invested in property following encouragement from the earlier politicians when conservatives were not left wing.

      Jenrick and his fellow pirates need to realise that LANDLORDS HAVE VOTES AS WELL (and feelings!).

      We can choose who we rent to despite the left wing lunatic charities and politicans.

      We can choose to leave the market and reduce the supply of rental property (as many are).

      We can choose to use our property in a different way.

      We can decide that political torture is not the place to be and avoid councils and housing authorities who have clearly demonstrated their hate and contempt of the PRS.

      Two faced council house families in a single room but that’s OK because it is emergency accommodation.

      PRS does it well a quer-ching! £30,000 fine in the coffers.

      We can sell off our UK properties and invest abroad in holiday accommodation (covid would have made that a bad choice! last year).

      The clowns in Government want landlords to co-operate in helping with social housing when councils prevent and delay evictions & incite contempt of court, do claw backs (from landlords) when their criminal tenants con the council. We have been an easy and unfair target for these bureaucrats for far too long.

      The political stupidy continues and they have got away with it because property is not a liquid asset and takes more time to move investments.

      Would any landlord now trust ANY politician? NO.

      Conservatives were once trusted but they are no more. That lack of trust makes a rod for their own backs in the longer term.

      Never-mind eh, just grant a large planning approval over a meal!

    2. Obscene greed of landlords has created astronomically high rents. End of.

      1. No, Rents are a result of supply and demand………you can’t rent a place for more than the market will bear.

    3. Supply and demand sets rent levels not landlords. It is a market. The constant attacks on the housing sector has driven away many landlords and reduced supply which drives up rents. The increase in demand for housing due to rising populations and lack of government investment in social housing adds to this inadequate supply. It is simple economics. Although constant emotional attacks on landlords may make some people feel better it does not resolve the problems. Nor will more and more legislation solve it as it reduces supply, as has been previously proven with the failed Rent Act 1977 if you study housing history.

    4. Dear Mr. Jenrick,
      You say “but it is only right that this is balanced with an assurance that landlords are able to recover their properties where they have valid reasons to do so”. We can’t ask for posession until the tenant is 2 months in arrears, so with your eviction extension, that takes us to a minimum of 8 months with no income. Factor in court time to get to the point a bailiff is on site to take posession & then the repairs, and time to find a new tenant, and I think you’ll find we are on or over a year. What on earth makes you think this offers a) a balanced deal for both parties & b) an incentive for the PRS to continue or grow? You clearly have no idea what you’re doing, or have a hidden agenda to destroy the PRS. Please, have the courtesy, to either state your intentions or stand aside & let someone that understands the meaning of the word balanced to take over. Or you could just do the right thing, create a housing court that deals exclusively with housing matters. That would go some way to providing balance. A year with no income & bills to pay is not possible for a professional landlord.

      Dear Ms Madders,
      You clearly have no idea what a professional landlord does. I’ll briefly explain. They put at least 25% of the price of the house down to buy it. They’ve arranged a mortgage, paid legal fees, paid an extra 3% stamp duty. They took a risk in buying the property. They probably renovated it. They paid to find a tenant. They took a risk that the tenant wouldn’t default. When something breaks they fix it. They pay tax on what they earn. They make sure that the property is kept wifhin the regulations for safety purposes. They cope when a new regulation is imposed. All they want you to do is pay the rent, & you begrudge them a little profit to house, feed & clothe themselves? This is the kind of attitude that’s going to make landlords get out of the sector. Listen to yourself, you are part of the problem. Thus approach will drive up rents. Get a grip!

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