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Panorama: trade body says most landlords do not abuse eviction powers

Trade bodies have started to react to last evening’s Panorama programme claiming alleged abuse of the Section 21 eviction system in the private rental sector.

The Residential Landlords Association says that while the programme looked at some emotive aspects of the policy, it was important to take hard evidence into account. 

“Most tenancies are ended by the tenant, rather than the landlord. Tenants are increasingly living longer in their private rented homes, with the average length of occupancy now being almost four years” says David Smith, RLA Policy Director.

“It is also illegal for landlords to evict a tenant simply because they have raised a complaint about standards in a property” he adds.

Smith insists the vast majority of landlords have no interest in getting rid of any tenant who respects the property and pays their rent. 

“If there is a problem with a tenant, using the process known as section 8 which requires landlords to outline the reasons for seeking to regain possession of their property, can take over 40 weeks. This is not sustainable for anyone” he insists.

The RLA has urged the government to release its plans for a new housing court which, the association says, would provide much easier access and faster justice to both tenants and landlords when all other channels have been exhausted.

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