Shelter and the Citizens Advice Bureau in Wales have previously warned that legislation on retaliatory evictions would increase rents and do little to tackle illegal activity by criminal landlords.
With the House of Lords due to vote on legislation to ban retaliatory evictions on 11th February, this appears to undermine support for this from various organisations, including Shelter.
The assessment is contained in a document entitled “Making rights real – Preventing retaliatory evictions in Wales” published in July 2013 by Shelter Wales, working with Citizens Advice Bureau Wales.
The report notes that such a measure could lead to rent rises. Page 5 reads:
“In reality the transition to protecting tenants from retaliatory action may need to be managed in a way that gives landlords time to raise investment and minimises the likelihood of extreme rent rises.”
Legislation is not likely to address the problem of the criminal landlords. Page 6 reads:
“There is a risk that introducing protection from retaliatory eviction may encourage rogue landlords to resort to illegal eviction methods such as harassment or withdrawal of services. This is why it is critical that local authorities have the resources to carry out enforcement.”
Commenting on this, Alan Ward, Chairman of the Residential Landlords Association said:
“The RLA is totally opposed to retaliatory evictions, and there is already plenty of legislation in place to prevent them. Improvements to processes can be made and we have suggested these, but further legislation may end up damaging tenants’ interests as this document says.”