Section 21 evictions have become a way for landlords to make a quick profit by cashing in, which further drives up prices

(19 December, 2018) Editorials

Ending Section 21 should not be controversial

27126Councillor Jack Buck, who has joined Southwark councillors calling for an end to 'no fault' evictions

At this time of year homelessness is all around us, and many people are inspired to donate to help those who find themselves sleeping rough or living in temporary accommodation.

Homelessness can happen to anybody, and private renters are particularly vulnerable.

Eleven million people in England live in rented homes and most of them are on fixed term contracts, usually for six months or a year.

After that, a landlord can evict their tenant with just two months’ notice, and without a reason.

It didn’t used to be like this. Before Section 21 of the 1988 Housing Act was introduced it was much more difficult for landlords to evict tenants who paid their rent on time and looked after their homes.

As London’s property market has boomed and a national housing shortage worsened, Section 21 evictions have become a way for landlords to make a quick profit by cashing in, which further drives up prices.

Living with the looming threat of eviction is difficult for anyone, but the anxiety and financial cost of a move is particularly harsh for older people and those with children at school.

Ending Section 21 should not be controversial.  In Scotland, the equivalent law has already been abolished. Now it’s up to the government’s opposition not to take no for an answer.

 

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