Government will not consider rent controls in England

Letting agents will undoubtedly welcome a commitment from housing minister Eddie Hughes that the UK government is not considering rent controls in England. 

In a written reply to a question from Labour MP Rachael Maskell, the minister agreed with Propertymark’s position that there was enough evidence available to show they would discourage investment in the private rented sector and lead to declining property standards.

Read the question and the Minister’s answer in full by clicking here.

The devolved governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are pursuing their own provisions for rent controls.

Timothy Douglas, head of policy and campaigns at Propertymark, commented: “Only last month we urged the minister to study closely his department’s own statistics that show tenants are 40 times more likely to be made homeless because their landlord has become so disillusioned with the tax and legislative burden and wants to sell their property, than because they can’t afford the rent.

“His decision to publicly rule out rent controls in England suggests that he has taken our advice.

“The policy of rent controls may be popular among those looking for a short-term solution to rising market rents amid the cost-of-living crisis, but they will not solve the root cause of the problem, which is an undersupply of homes across all tenures.

“In a free market, where rents are allowed to flex in line with demand, investment in the private rented sector is incentivised. This provides a far more effective solution to the issue of affordability and encourages the long-term supply of good quality housing.”

Meanwhile, there is still no clear date for the publication of The Renters’ Reform Bill White Paper outlining legislation to scrap Section 21 evictions.

Despite speculation that the government would publish the paper over the next few weeks, Hughes gave no concrete date when answering a parliamentary question about a date.

“We are absolutely committed to delivering a better deal for renters and will be bringing forward a Renters Reform Bill in this parliamentary session,” said Hughes. “We will publish a White Paper shortly that will set out more detail on our reform proposals.” 

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Written by Marc Da Silva

Source Property Industry Eye


Refundable Holding deposit - Capped at 1 weeks rent

Security Deposit - Capped at 5 weeks rent for annual rental under £50,000, or 6 weeks rent for annual rental over £50,000

Rent - The agreed monthly rent

Changes to tenancy - Capped at £50 inc VAT

Early termination charge - Not exceeding the landlord’s financial losses

Late payment of rent - Interest of 3% above BoE base rate for each day the rent is late, once it is 14 days overdue

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