At Ringley we feel that scrapping this system is not good for landlords or, ultimately, for tenants. Here’s why:
1) Section 21 has been arouind for some time and it works. The system is known by landlords and by tenants, as it has been in place since the Housing Act 1988 was enacted.
2) Many landlords find it cheaper and more efficient in using Section 21 to get their property back. This is rather than using a Section 8 eviction or breach action. The Section 8 method is extremely adversarial. Tenants served with a Section 8 notice (which is not always for for rent arrears) invariably stop paying their rent. Because these Section 8 procedures are conforntational, the landlord often ends up with costs in the thousands and with huge void risk. Added to this, cases sit backed up waiting for court dates for months.
3) There are already provisions to stop incorrect Section 21 use by landlords. Before a landlord can serve a Section 21 Notice on tenancies entered into since 2015, they must comply with certain legal requirements. This, as an example, includes the provision of:
4) Under the terms of the Housing Act 1988, a landlord who is worried that they might need their property back is able to protect thenmselves if, not later than the start of the tenancy, the landlord gave the tenant that possession notice in writing that the property might be recovered on the basis of Ground 1 specified in Schedule 2 of the 1988 Act. Alternatively, if the court is of the opinion that it is just and equitable that the requirement of notice may be dispensed with because:
(a) at some time before the tenancy commenced, the landlord seeking possession or, in the case of joint landlords seeking possession, at least 1 of them occupied the dwelling as their principal home; or
(b) the landlord seeking possession or, in the case of joint landlords seeking possession, at least 1 of them requires the dwelling as his or his spouse’s only principal home and neither the landlord (or, in the case of joint landlords, any 1 of them) nor any other person who gave the notice mentioned above, acquired the reversion on the tenancy for a financial consideration.
The Government claims that landlords’ use of Section 21 eviction notices is the leading cause of homelessness in the UK.
The National Landlords Association (NLA) has completely rejected this notion. Out of 33,020 households assessed by local authorities between October and December 2018, the NLA has pointed out that just 3,890 (11.8%) faced homelessness due to them being served with a Section 21 notice. We are of the opinion that the proposals will deliver a whole range of unintended consequences, including a lower supply of private rented housing due to there being more risk-averse landlords.
For various reasons. landlords are now exiting the market at a faster rate. It can be seen that this is damaging the existing fragile supply of properties, especially in the areas where they are desperately needed. Tenants on Universal Credit, benefits and/or with a bad credit record/CCJs will lose out.
Added to this, the removal of Section 21 will render more landlords more susceptible to rogue tenants. These tenants bring endless heartache and cost landlords an awful lot of money. Landlords have to be able to evict bad tenants. If it become too difficult to do so, we will very probably require new legislation to encourage landlords into the rental market as we did all the way back in 1988.
The institutions are coming into the market, especially in the Build to Rent Sector, and may cover the main towns and cities. A healthy market, however, requires a range of accommodation types. By trying to push buy-to-let landlords out of the market the supply of properties could plummet. We urgently need our rental market to work for everyone. Scrapping Section 21 isn’t the way forward.
Mary-Anne Bowring FIRPM FRICS FARLA FCABE Founder/Head of Asset Management
Strategic partnerships, holistic delivery/ opportunities, growth, value engineering, thought leadership
Ian Barber MD BTR Mobilisation & Leasing
Runs HQ & site lease-up teams. Drives rent pricing, mobilisation, marketing, happy residents!
Jon Curtis MRICS Head of Building Engineering
Chartered Building Surveyor. Lectures on EWS1 & building safety. Runs CapEx programmes.
Kate Robinson MIRPM MD Blocks/FM Management (London Region)
Master plan setup, ops and staffing and resident engagement. ISO45001 champion.
Lee Harle Partner Ringley Law
Plot conveyancing. Debt litigation. Group Company Secretary.
Anthony Kingdon MIRPM AssocRICS MD Blocks/FM Management (North Region)
Stakeholder engagement. Mixed tenure specialist. Budget management. Plant audit, PPM compliance.
Chris Georgalis MRICS Head of Commercial Valuation
Chartered Valuer. Rental valuations: retail, leisure. IRR modelling and valuations for secured lending. Compulsory purchase & rent reviews
Nichola Pughe MRICS Head of Residential Valuation
Chartered Valuer. Rental development & mixed use valuations, IRR modelling. Leasehold enfranchisement specialist
Libby Chen MSc Compliance Manager
Operational Plant & Equipment strategy PPM Compliance lead, Asset tagging Client major projects
Dipesh Parekh Director PlanetRent
Customer centric, vertically integrated PropTech/fin-tech solutions.
Leana Aristodemou MIRPM MARLA AssocRICS Strategic lead: ESG & Asset Business Plan delivery
Financial modelling, valuation analyst to support underwriting & fund reporting.
Natalie Birmingham Helpdesk Support Manager
Trainer & Helpdesk Manager: people, systems,contractors. ISO45001 supply chain accreditation.
Steve Norman Planning Director
Land due diligence (opportunities & constraints) Has contributed to a number of award winning schemes.