Landlords could be prevented by law from ‘retaliatory evictions’ of tenants who ask for energy efficiency improvements to be made to their properties.

Minister Greg Barker, in a debate in the Commons that took in the Green Deal and private rented housing, said that the Department for Energy and Climate Change “has set up a working group involving a range of key stakeholders to explore the issue of retaliatory evictions in relation to the private rented sector provisions in the Energy Bill”.

This group is due to report next month.

Under the Energy Bill, private rented homes which do not meet minimum standards of energy efficiency will be banned from the market from 2018, but Barker said that the measure could be introduced sooner.

He said: “We are committed to working with the sector to encourage uptake of the Green Deal well ahead of 2018.

“For this reason, I have been clear that I see 2018 as the ‘finishing line’ as opposed to the ‘starting line’ for this policy. However, if we do not see the sector responding well ahead of this date, we could reconsider the timing and introduce regulations earlier.”

In addition to the 2018 deadline, from 2016, landlords will not be able to ‘unreasonably’ refuse consent to requests from tenants for ‘reasonable’ energy efficiency improvements, Barker confirmed.

See also the next story about the number of landlords who think their properties fail EPC requirements.

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The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) represents the interests of landlords in the private rented sector (PRS) across England and Wales. With over 23,000 subscribing members, and an additional 16,000 registered guests who engage regularly with the association, we are the leading voice of private landlords. Combined, they manage almost half a million properties.

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