Section 21 in the news again.
The evicting of a tenant under section 21 has hit the headlines once again. If ever a section needed a PR agent section 21 would be it. It does seem like many are using the “no reason” eviction that has been attached to Section 21 as a means of gaining votes or publicity.
The latest to jump on the band wagon are the London Assembly Members, who are now lobbying the Mayor of London to back a campaign to abolish section 21 and will be also lobbying the government for a change in the law.
Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988, allows landlords to evict tenants without cause, however many landlords have a reason to evict, normally to sell their buy to let property and not to increase the rent, as Generation rent would have you believe. I am all for a legal and fair playing field for both tenants and landlords but again it seems like the media are using the mess that is the housing sector to make a storm in a tea cup.
The assembly claim that removing section 21 would reduce the number of tenant evictions in London. Additionally, they claim, London renters would feel more secure in their homes and know they can’t be thrown out on the streets for no reason.
I can fully appreciate that potentially having to move at relatively short notice could be stressful for a tenant. Would removing section 21 take away that stress? What if removing section 21 has the impact of load of private landlords selling up? No home is more stressful than the potential of moving at short notice. From personal experience a good tenant does not have that stress.
I agree that as the culture changes towards one of a generation of renters that the system is due for an over hall but let us make it fair to all stakeholders and not just stakeholders with a vested interest in the tenants.
The London Assembly Members and Generation rent are calling for an end to Section 21 claiming tenants are fearful about complaining about substandard housing due to revenge evictions. However, tenants are already protected from so called revenge evictions by the Deregulation Act. A fact that seems to have been conveniently missed by both stakeholders.
Should section 21 be abolished, would it need to be replaced with an alternative?