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Section 21 Ban to be Accelerated by Shelter

Campaigning charity Shelter wants the government to fast-track its pledge to scrap Section 21 eviction powers.

The government pledged a White Paper and a reform bill to scrap the powers - but these could in theory take a year or more to play out because of slow Parliamentary procedure.

So Shelter wants the scrapping to be accelerated following the publication of new eviction figures over the weekend.

The figures reveal that 5,890 landlords in England started Section 21 eviction court proceedings against tenants between January and March 2022 – up 41 per cent compared to the same period in 2020 before the pandemic.

Claims for eviction for other reasons by private landlords also increased, totalling 6,316 claims in the first quarter of 2022 – up by 11 per cent on the same period in 2020.

Overall 18,626 eviction claims were made to court by landlords between January and March 2022, up by 32 per cent on the previous quarter.

The government first committed to scrap Section 21 evictions in April 2019 and Shelter claims that since then, nearly 230,000 private renters in England have been served with a formal eviction notice.

A statement from Shelter says: “Recent Office for National Statistics figures show that half of renters could not afford an unexpected, but necessary, expense of £850. Yet new research by Shelter reveals the average cost of moving home for a private renter, including deposits and rent in advance, is nearly double that: £1,650.”

Polly Neate, Shelter’s chief executive, says: “It’s alarming that as the living cost crisis rages more landlords are kicking tenants out of their homes. These are real people whose lives are being turned upside down and simply cannot afford to lose their homes right now.

“Every day our emergency helpline supports renters who are scrambling around trying to find another home after being slapped with a no-fault eviction. But soaring living costs mean many are struggling to stump up the cash for a house move they don’t want to make. 

“While scrapping Section 21 evictions alone won’t solve the cost-of-living crisis for renters, it will at least give them some much needed security in their homes.

“The government promised renters three times that it will introduce a Renters’ Reform Bill to scrap unfair Section 21 no-fault evictions. Now, it must get the job done as every minute wasted puts another renter at risk.”

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