Levelling-Up Committee Private renters inquiry questions Government Minister, Monday 7th November, 4pm
3 November 2022
On Monday 7 November, the Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (LUHC) Committee continues the public evidence sessions for its inquiry into Reforming the Private Rented Sector, examining the Government’s proposals set out in its recent White Paper, A Fairer Private Rented Sector
- Watch Parliament TV: Reforming the Private Rented Sector
- Inquiry: Reforming the Private Rented Sector
- Levelling Up, Housing and Communities Committee
The LUHC Committee will question witnesses representing local government and then Felicity Buchan MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) and Charlotte Spencer, Director, Private Rented Sector, DLUHC.
Ahead of the evidence session, which will be the last for this inquiry, the LUHC Committee has today published 234 written evidence submissions(see full list) received from a range of stakeholders, including landlords and landlord organisations, letting agents, local authorities and groups representing tenants. The homeless charity Glass Door, Advice for Renters, Battersea Cats and Dogs Home, the Social Market Foundation, student unions, including Cambridge and Nottingham Trent, landlords such as Grainger Plc, the anti-poverty charity Z2K, and the lettings platform Goodlord are among the groups who submitted evidence.
The written evidence submissions were submitted ahead of the Committee’s deadline on 19 August.
The written evidence submissions cover a range of issues concerning the proposed private rented sector reforms, including: the impact of the reforms on the size and affordability of the private rented sector; the abolition of fixed-term tenancies; whether the reforms to the grounds for possession strike the right balance between allowing landlords to manage their properties and protecting tenants from unfair eviction; whether the courts will be able to cope with the increasing caseload expected to follow the implementation of the reforms; and the ability of local councils to enforce housing standards, particularly the proposed new decent homes standard.
A small selection of written evidence submissions, including from the National Residential Landlords Association, Generation Rent, Shelter, and the Local Government Association, were published after the Committee’s first evidence session with representatives from these organisations (on 5 September).
In Monday’s session, the cross-party group of MPs will question local government representatives on the current state of the private rented sector and the ability of local authorities to enforce both existing housing standards and the Government’s proposals. It will also question the Minister on the intention behind the proposals and stakeholders’ concerns about them.
The Committee’s inquiry is scrutinising the Government’s plans to, among other things: introduce a decent homes standard for the private rented sector; reform the system of tenancies and abolish no-fault evictions; reform the grounds on which landlords can take possession of their properties; and better protect tenants from unfair rent increases. According to the White Paper, nearly 11,000 householders in the private rented sector (in 2019-2020) had to move because the landlord put up their rent. The inquiry is also exploring the Government’s proposals to set up a new ombudsman covering all private landlords, to speed up the court process and to clamp down on landlords who refuse to let to benefit claimants, and the ability of local councils to enforce both existing standards and the proposed new DHS.
The full inquiry terms of reference are available here.
Monday 7 November 2022, from 4pm
- Cllr Ian Corkin, Deputy Leader, Cherwell District Council
- Cllr Ben Fitter-Harding, Leader, Canterbury City Council
- Felicity Buchan MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities
- Charlotte Spencer, Director, Private Rented Sector and Leasehold, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities
The opening evidence session for this inquiry took place on Monday 5 September with witnesses from a range of organisations, including a range of council representatives, the National Residential Landlords Association, British Property Federation, Shelter, and Generation Rent. The session is also available to watch again on Parliament TV.
Image: Gabriel Kraus/Unsplash