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Graham Awards


Section 21 - Liberal Democrats to debate call to scrap landlords’ rights

The Liberal Democrat conference, which begins on Saturday, is to debate a resolution calling for the scrapping of Section 21 - precisely the same as the government is proposing.

The party conference agenda has almost no other reference to housing during its four days of debates but on Tuesday morning, shortly before Jo Swinson’s first speech as party leader, the delegates in Bournemouth will be debating under the subject: “Reforming Housing Legislation - Scrapping Section 21 ‘No Fault Evictions’”.

The resolution reads:


“Conference notes with concern: (i) the growing numbers of people across the UK reliant upon the private rental sector for their homes, including families on low incomes or receiving benefits, single parents, people living with disabilities, LGBTQ+ people, older people, and people who are from two or more of these categories.

“(ii) The use of Section 21 of the Housing Act to evict private rental tenants, via a no-fault eviction, where a landlord needs to provide no reason and needs to provide only two months’ notice, leaving the tenant to cover moving an relocation costs irrespective of their circumstances.

“(iii) The impacts that no-fault evictions have on those evicted, who may not have sufficient funds to find new accommodation in the time available, including forcing children to move schools, tearing people away from their friends and communities, and leaving tenants financially compromised and requiring support from the state.

“(iv) The impact that the threat of a no-fault eviction has on tenants who cannot plan their lives when they have no confidence where their home will be in 12 months’ time or are intimidated into not complaining about disrepair or mistreatment. 

“(v) The impact that no fault evictions have on local authorities, increasing the numbers of people they must support as a consequence of being forces into homelessness following a S21 eviction.

“Conference reaffirms the Liberal Democrat commitment to:

“(a) Reform the private rental sector to make it fairer for private renters.

“(b) Provide support for private renters to enable them to safely report health and safety issues in rented properties.

“(c) Support renters by enabling local authorities to create and maintain registers of landlords providing private rental properties for lease.

“Conference calls for~:

“1. The abolition of S21 by reform of the Housing Act 1988.

“2. The reform of court process (as has happened in Scotland) to enable landlords to have easier access to justice in the event that tenants are found to be in breach of their tenancy agreements.

“3. Further work to be undertaken with tenant and landlord organisations and groups to explore the opportunities for further reform and improvement of the private rental sector, such as revising the current assured short-hold tenancy legislation to encourage the use of long-term tenancies as a standard.”



Letting Agent Today and Estate Agent Today will be reporting on housing and agency-related issues that come up at the main party conferences over the next three weeks, starting this weekend with a preview of the Liberal Democrat, Labour and Conservative conferences.

  • jeremy clarke

    Yet again politicians at Westminster failing to accept that current and past housing policies are to blame, not the private landlords! If Westminster had insisted on houses being built, had stopped introducing so much legislation and red tape and had not crucified landlords over tax, there would be no debate!
    Westminster look at yourselves for the solution and stop blaming others for your shortcomings.


    Well said Jeremy!

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    What ever happened to balance? I feel so unfairly treated by a society I am forced to pay forever growing contributions in the form of taxes. Like many I went into this to be able to fund myself in retirement without being a burden on the state. Love or loath Blair it all worked very well for all in the 90s when I began. We simply are letting the wrong sort of people into the houses of parlament, and as long as you let self serving extremists rule the balance of what is fair they will always favour one side by an extreme, making society very unjust. I must stop these rants but lately the way those that govern us is just making me very concerned to say the least.

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    We all should just sell up and let the government house people.
    But they can't can they !?
    Yet why attack good landlords? Being a landlord for over 20 years,I hate landlords from hell and they need putting out of business!
    But really? attack good landlords because of them?
    Real landlords ie good landlords,should get proper tax breaks and more help and be able to invest more
    after all it is a business,like any other but contributes to society and is doing a job the government can't!!! I am made to feel like a criminal,just because of being in this business.
    like many on here,I did all this to have a better retirement and have NEVER EVER CLAIMED BENEFITS
    because I worked hard,saved hard,invested hard all my life.
    So why treat me like a bank robber????????????????????????????

  • James B

    The frantic chase for generation rent votes goes on


    Who don't even vote

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    Point 'v)' is the *real* reason for this idea...

    James B

    Definitely a big factor as majority of tenants evicted are a problem and councils don’t want them either

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    Luke yes they will discover how many S21 notices that should have been S.8

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    • 12 September 2019 17:03 PM

    It is obvious that most LL would use the S8 process if it wasn't so cumbersome and costly.
    The reason?............... most evictions are for rent default.
    With a S8 you get an automatic CCJ which you DON'T with a S21.
    Yet despite this LL still choose to use the S21 process.
    Clearly rent defaulting is not non-fault!!!!!
    Few LL bother with MCOL after a successful S21 eviction.
    S21 is very slow..S8 even slower if that were possible!!!
    Anyone who knew anything about rent defaulting would appreciate why LL use S21 in preference to S8.

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    No landlord will evict a tenant who is paying the rent, getting on with the neighbours or looking after the property.

    When will these muppets realise that the only reason people use a section 21 notice is that section 8 is not fit for purpose.


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