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Graham Awards


Agent says 2021 is chance to level playing field with tenants

A letting agent and property management expert says the likely introduction of the Renters Reform Bill in 2021 is a chance for the industry to be given a level playing field with tenants.

Robert Burdett of James Leigh Property Management says: "Landlords and their tenants need to have legislation in place that provides a level playing field for both parties. On the one hand, a recognition that a property belongs to a landlord and that property needs to be respected. And on the other hand, protecting the rights of good tenants so that they can stay in their homes.”

He continues: ”We need to see absolute clarity around what constitutes grounds for possession of a property. Court reform is also needed, with the introduction of a dedicated housing court or tribunal with the right expertise to ensure consistency for both landlord and tenant. 


“And finally, reform that creates lifetime deposits that enable tenants to pass their deposit directly between landlords, while protecting landlords' rights to make valid claims for damages to properties."

He says that the commitment made to abolish Section 21 at the end of 2019 was headline-grabbing news, but landlords must retain the right to repossess their homes, providing they have a legitimate reason.

Burdett believes the government has the perfect opportunity to work with landlords and tenants to make credible reforms that strikes a balance between the needs of landlords and tenants.

"If the government goes ahead with its Renters' Reform Bill in 2021 we have a perfect opportunity to bring together tenants, landlords and their representative bodies to make change that will create a level playing field for both landlords and tenants."


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