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Labour wrong on Private Rented Sector

Sally Walmsley
Written by Sally Walmsley

Landlords are today warning that the Labour Party has got things wrong on the private rented sector…

Landlords are today warning that the Labour Party has got things wrong on the private rented sector.

Labour Leader, Ed Miliband MP will today launch his party’s local and European election campaign with a call for new three year tenancies in the private rented sector and rent controls in the form of “stable rents”.

Such sentiments fail to recognise the reality of the private rented sector and serve only to exaggerate people’s fears.

  • The most recent English Housing Survey shows that the average length of tenancies under the current tenancy model is now 3.8 years with those staying on longer in their properties enjoying considerable savings on their rents.
  • Government figures show 83 per cent of tenants in the private rented sector are satisfied with their properties compared to 81 per cent in the social sector.
  • Just 9 per cent of tenancies in the private rented sector are ended by the landlord.
  • Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that rents in the private rented sector have been increasing by much less than inflation measured both by CPI and RPI. Over the last year they increased by just 1% alone in England.
  • In July 2013, the cross party Communities (DCLG) and Local Government Select Committee observed in its report on the private rented sector that rent controls “would serve only to reduce investment in the sector at a time when it is most needed.”

Commenting on Labour’s announcement, RLA Vice Chairman, Chris Town said:

“Whilst it is good to see a debate being held on the role that the private rented sector has to play in meeting the country’s housing needs, it is vital that it is based on fact and not populism.

“The RLA will study Labour’s proposals carefully, but all the evidence clearly shows that rent controls of the kind being proposed, would critically undermine investment in new homes to rent and are not needed given that official statistics show that rents are increasing by much less than inflation.”

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About the author

Sally Walmsley

Sally Walmsley

Sally Walmsley is the Communications Manager for the RLA and Editor of RPI magazine. With 16 years’ experience writing for regional and national newspapers and magazines she is responsible for producing articles for our Campaigns and News Centre, the weekly E-News newsletter and editorial content for our media partners.

She issues press releases promoting the work of the RLA and its policies and campaigns to the regional and national media and works alongside the marketing team on the association’s social media channels to build support for the RLA and its work.

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