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Renters Reform Bill at risk of collapse

Renters Reform Bill at risk of collapse
Anna Sagar
Written By:
Anna Sagar

The Renters Reform Bill is at risk of failing as Tory MPs are holding up the bill, a media report has suggested.

The Sun has said that the Renters Reform Bill, which would ban no-fault evictions, has said that Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove is unable to proceed with the legislation as backbench Tory MPs cannot reach agreement on certain aspects.

The report suggests that the group is led by Totnes MP Anthony Magnall and that the main point of contention is around banning fixed-term rental tenancies and replacing them with periodic tenancies without an end date.

The Sun said that the bill has reached a “stalemate” and this could mean that time will run out to pass the bill through the House of Commons.

The bill is currently at the report stage in the House of Commons, which is the fourth out of five stages it has to go through before it goes through to the House of Lords.

When it progresses to the House of Lords, it then needs to go through another five stages before going through two final stages to become law.

The bill has been coming under a lot of scrutiny since it was introduced as part of this parliamentary session, with pressure to progress the bill high.

Earlier this year, Gove said that the Government would end Section 21 eviction notices, known as no-fault evictions, before the general election. This is a campaign promise of the Conservatives from 2019.

The Government also promised that it would “deliver a fair private rented sector (PRS)” after a leak of draft amendments suggested that a ban on no-fault evictions would not be introduced until the Justice Secretary had done a report on the potential impact it would have on the courts.

Renters Reform Bill delay would be ‘biggest betrayal of renters in a generation’

Ben Twomey, chief executive of Generation Rent, said: “If the Renters Reform Bill were to collapse as this report suggests, it would be the biggest betrayal of renters in a generation and nothing short of a disgrace.

“Ending Section 21 no-fault evictions has been promised for almost five years, and the prospect that the Government might abandon its word to 12 million renters because of party infighting is shameful.”

He continued on to say that the bill aims, according to its own wording, to “‘rebalance the power between tenants and landlords’, but no compromise appears to be enough”.

“Concessions to weaken and delay the bill’s impact have already been made. This bill is more than fair to landlords, and the major landlord organisations all support reform. With soaring homelessness and record evictions, opponents of this bill are far removed from the realities of renting.

“The Government must bring forward this bill, and it must stand firm to make sure it is worth the paper it is written on. Renters are tired of being a football used for political point-scoring. We deserve so much better than this, and will certainly remember if tenants’ rights are denied by the collapse of this bill,” Twomey said.

Related: Speculated no-fault eviction walk-back by Government