Additional support needed for tenants and landlords
The UK Government has recently announced that the ban on evictions in England is to be extended until the end of March. This means that eviction notices – which could have started again on 22 February – cannot be served for another six weeks. The eviction ban had already been extended from 11 January when it was originally due to expire.
The only tenants that will be allowed to be evicted using bailiffs before 31 March will be those that cause the greatest strain on landlords or residents and neighbours. Exemptions include cases of illegal occupation, anti-social behaviour and arrears of six months’ rent or more.
Landlords are also required to give six-month notice periods to tenants before starting possession proceedings, except in the most serious circumstances. This means that most renters now served notice can stay in their homes until at least August 2021, giving them time to find alternative accommodation.
This announcement highlights just how difficult a situation landlords and tenants are facing. Of course, vulnerable private renters need protection but so too do landlords. I appreciate how much pressure the Government is under from multiple angles but careful consideration and additional support is required for all parties in this process.
Let’s hope that policy makers can generate some sensible options which lead to better protection for renters and landlords, and help combat any debt crisis they may be facing.