A consumer group wants buy to let properties to be re-let only if the tenants in them want to move.
The call is one of a raft of demands made by Citizens Advice.
Most of its demands relate to tenants during the Coronavirus crisis but Amy Hughes, the housing expert at Citizens Advice, also says unequivocally: “Properties should only be put on the rental market if the tenant has said they want to move.”
Amongst the charity’s demands are:
- “the government should accelerate its policy to scrap section 21 - so called ‘no fault evictions’” and
- “temporary changes to allow courts further discretion when faced with tenants whose rent arrears have been caused by the coronavirus outbreak”
The group adds that it is worried tenants may be uncomfortable with government guidelines about viewings if private rental properties during the virus crisis.
It reminds tenants:
- You do not have to leave your home just because a fixed term has come to an end - unless your landlord has obtained an order for possession
- Even in this instance, in many cases measures to delay the process have been put in place.
- If you don’t want your landlord or letting agent to organise viewings you can refuse and they may not enter without your permission
- However, allowing access may be a part of your contract, and breaching the terms of your contract may allow your landlord to take steps to enforce it - through an injunction or serving notice and make a claim for possession
- But to succeed the landlord needs to prove they are being reasonable, and a court may not consider it reasonable if the tenant is taking steps to protect themselves against a potential health risk
- A landlord who serves a so-called ‘no fault eviction’ section 21 notice, however, does not need to prove that they are acting reasonably.