Tenants would suffer under Labour proposals

Written by RLA

Landlords are concerned that Labour’s policies for the private rented sector repeated today in a speech by Emma Reynolds MP will only make the situation worse for tenants.

Landlords are concerned that Labour’s policies for the private rented sector repeated today in a speech by Emma Reynolds MP will only make the situation worse for tenants.

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) says that proposals to bring in rent controls and enforce longer term tenancies will only deter investment in new rented housing at a time when more supply is desperately needed to meet the increasing demand.

In February 2010, the then Labour Government, published a consultation document entitled “Investment in the UK private rented sector.” This warned against rent controls.

The document further warned against long tenancies arguing for the need to maintain flexibility within the system. It explained:

“The PRS allows households to move easily both within and between regions, leading to a more efficient allocation of labour and skills. The corollary of this is that if the supply of PRS tenancies were to become limited, those needing uncertain or short periods of accommodation in a particular area would find themselves severely disadvantaged.”

Commenting on the Shadow Housing Minister’s speech, Chris Town, Vice Chairman of the Residential Landlords Association said:

“Sadly, once again Labour are playing to people’s fears and failing to tell people that the average length of residence for tenants in the private rented sector is now 3.8 years and where tenancies are ended, just 9% of them are ended by the landlord.

“It is discouraging that the Opposition are failing also to recognise that official Office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows that rents across the country are falling in real terms.

“What the sector  needs is a concerted effort to boost the supply of homes to rent by recognising renting a property as a trading activity within the taxation system and making it easier for the majority of landlords who are individuals, to develop on small plots of unused public sector land.

“Far from securing the homes we need, Labour’s policies would be highly damaging, further reducing the choice for tenants.” 

About the author



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.


  • I keep my rents below the average for their location to encourage good tenants to stay, on top of that I keep my properties in a good condition and expect tenants to look after the properties also. I keep good accurate tax records, use a good firm of accountants to do my tax returns honestly and accurately. Other small landlords like myself who I know do the same.
    If any government start to impose long term contracts, rent controls etc that will impinge on my ability to remove a bad tenant or to make a viable monthly return on rental properties it will cause to me think very carefully about the viability of staying in the market, particularly as property prices are now on the increase. If other landlords have the same attitude, which according to my straw poll they do, I wonder what the local councils can do to replace the lost private sector housing that is mainly I good areas and go good condition, which is more that what I see of local council housing, at least in my area. Leave the regulations as they are, if anything encourage good landlords to stay…not leave the market.

  • Fully agree with above. Likewise we have all new properties in good areas. Rent under market value so as to encourage long term tenants who look after the properties. Only one tenant has ever left to move county. As above we were just discussing would we sell or increase rents to true market value. Either way the only real loser in the equation would be the presently reliable tenants.
    Typical labour interfering in markets they don’t fully understand and creating consequential problems. Hope they start a huge building programme as their back up plan.

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