The pressure group Generation Rent, which in the past has been highly critical of letting agents and other aspects of the private rental sector, is stepping up its campaign to have Section 21 scrapped.
In a statement it claims that the next government could reduce homelessness cases by 10 per cent by ending what it calls “no-fault evictions.”
It has set out a series of ‘General Election battlegrounds’ - key seats whose constituents, it claims, face the highest risk of being made homeless by “an arbitrary eviction.”
It claims, for example, that tenants in the London Borough of Havering were most likely to have a landlord selling up or re-letting, “with 39 in every 1000 private renter households being owed a homelessness duty by the council for these reasons in 2018-19.”
Generation Rent says that official data shows that of 263,720 households that faced homelessness in 2018-19, 28,320 - that’s 10.7 per cent - were because their landlord was selling up, reletting the property or responding to a complaint by the tenant about disrepair.
It claims a further 14,940 or 5.7 per cent of homelessness cases were the result of rent arrears.
Generation Rent has already announced that it is campaigning alongside other pressure groups to encourage political parties in the General Election to adopt more pro-tenant policies including:
- a commitment to end Section 21 evictions and require landlords who evict to sell to pay their tenant’s costs of moving home;
- changes to the benefits system so that recipients are able to keep a roof over their head, including linking local housing allowance to 30% of local rents and ending the delay for receiving Universal Credit; and
- legally binding guidance on the Equality Act that prohibits discrimination against people receiving benefits.