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Agency plays down impact of rent freeze and evictions ban

A lettings agency in Scotland has played down the impact of the emergency rent freeze and eviction ban which have been introduced by the Scottish Nationalists and Green Party politicians running the government north of the border.

Under a new law, rents for existing private and social housing tenants cannot be increased until at least the end of March 2023 and can be extended for up to a further 12 months in two six-month blocks. 

Whereas most landlord and agency representatives have given dire warnings about the impact of both measures, and in particular saying the rent freeze will lead to dis-investment from buy to let, the Clan Gordon agency in Edinburgh is taking a different line.


Its managing director - Jonathan Gordon - has already worked with the Scottish Government as a member of the working group which ultimately created the Private Residential Tenancy system which was introduced in 2017, giving additional rights to renters. 

Now he says he is heartened that the government says the legislation introducing the rent freeze and eviction ban “balances the protections that tenants need, with safeguards for those landlords who may also be impacted by the financial crisis.”

“Despite the media attention when this was announced this is not a ban on landlords ending tenancies. Landlords can still serve notice as normal if they wish to end a tenancy. Most tenants leave during the notice period when they find alternative accommodation so this restriction will have little effect here. If the tenant doesn’t leave during the notice period, the landlord can apply to the tribunal for an eviction order as normal. 

"However, the legislation delays a landlord from enforcing an eviction order issued by the tribunal in some circumstances for up to six months. Tenants can still be evicted for anti-social behaviour, lender reposition,  abandonment, substantial rent arrears or if the landlords intend to sell or move back in to the property to alleviate financial hardship.

“We are also very pleased to see that as well as considering the tenants in this legislation, there are new safeguards for private landlords who find themselves impacted by the cost-of-living crisis. In certain circumstances, Landlords will be able to apply to Rent Service Scotland to increase the rent on a property to cover up to 50% of a limited number of specific costs, including increased mortgage interest payments and increases in landlords insurance or service charges. 

“Interestingly the rent cap also applies to university halls of residence and other student accommodation where energy costs may be included in rent payments. There has been widespread concerns about increases to fuel prices, but the legislation prevents landlords passing on gas and electricity cost rises, in increased rents within the next six months unless the landlord can prove excessively high use of any utilities.  Students are also covered by the same eviction laws and can only be evicted in cases of anti-social or criminal behaviour.”

Gordon says his agency’s approach has always been to encourage landlords to help us support any tenant who faces any difficulties including financial ones.

“This is going to be a difficult road ahead and we are pleased that the government has put some measures in place to support and protect landlords and tenants” he concludes.

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    Poacher turned Gamekeeper

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    Well he would defend it if he was on the panel plus what part of it helps landlords? If you were my agent you would be getting an email this morning.,

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    • C S
    • 20 October 2022 10:22 AM

    Unwise move. Seems somewhat short sighted to annoy what is likely to be large portions of your client base.


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