Amendments Made to the Renters Reform Bill

Date Published 26 April 2024

The Renters Reform Bill has seen over 200 amendments made, as it returned to the House of Commons for its Report Stage and Third Reading on 24th April 2024. Housing Secretary Michael Gove MP has stated that it's now up to the House of Lords to decide how quickly the Bill can become law. Jacob Young, MP, defended the Bill by emphasizing that it strikes a fair balance, despite objections from renters' groups about weakened tenant protections. He also pointed out that measures detrimental to Landlords would ultimately not benefit tenants.

Adams Estates have since looked at the amendments and made note of which ones may be the most important to both Landlords and tenants.

The main aspect of the Bill is the ban on no-fault evictions. This Bill now requires an assessment of the readiness of the courts before Section 21 can be abolished. There is also news whether the UK Government would look at serious eviction cases such as anti-social behavior to be made a priority.

Young has mentioned that there is no plan to scrap HMO or selective licensing after the Bill is introduced. It is intended that they will be used differently to target specific local issues instead.

From last week's newsletter we saw the current situation with student lets. Since then, there has been some improvements from the amendments. Landlords have the option to utilize the student possession ground to evict tenants in accordance with the academic year, provided that it is explicitly stated at the beginning of the tenancy and all occupants of the property are students. It is important to note that this provision is applicable to all types of properties, not limited to HMOs. We are still awaiting whether there will be more news on fixed-term contracts.

When advertising properties on the market, all Landlord's or agencies now must state the proposed rent. Adams Estates have always ensured the rental amount is on the advertisement and follows clear guidance for material information from Rightmove.

Another amendment is to prevent bidding wars, this seeks to prevent Landlords or persons acting on their behalf from inviting or encouraging bids that exceed the rental price stated in the advertised price.