The state opening of Parliament will take place on Thursday, and so will the Queen’s speech, which will set out the government’s agenda for the coming session, outlining proposed policies and legislation.
Ahead of the speech the press has been briefed that it will include the legislation to end Section 21 repossessions. This is in line with the Housing Secretary’s comments during the General Election, that the legislation would be brought to Parliament next year (2020).
What does the RLA want to see?
As part of its six key asks in the RLA’s General Election manifesto for the private rented sector, the RLA called for wholesale reform to the justice system.
In the RLA’s possession reform survey published earlier this year, one of the key findings was that Section 21 is mostly not a ‘no fault’ eviction-in fact many landlords are using it it cases of rent arrears and antisocial behavior, because they lack confidence in the current Section 8 ground based process.
The research found that 83% of landlords who had used Section 21 had done so due to rent arrears, while over half had relied on it when their tenants were behaving antisocially.
Gaining possession through the courts-a lengthy process
Government data shows that it now takes private landlords an average of 22.6 weeks from making a claim to the courts for a property to be repossessed to it happening. In order to speed up justice for both landlords and tenants when things go wrong in a tenancy, the RLA is calling for a specialist, properly funded and properly resourced housing court to be introduced.
In its manifesto for the private rented sector, the association also called for an improvement to Section 8 grounds and the retention of Section 21 until grounds based possession is fit for purpose, so landlords can have confidence in using this instead of Section 21.
Where to watch the Queen’s speech live
The Queen’s Speech can be watched live on Thursday at 11am, over on Parliament TV.
The RLA will also be live tweeting key housing related announcements, you can follow live coverage from 11 on the RLA’s twitter feed, @RLA_News.