Government to outlaw retaliation evictions following campaign by Brent MP

Sarah Teather, Shelter supporters and Stephen Williams, outside the Department for Communities and L

Sarah Teather, Shelter supporters and Stephen Williams, outside the Department for Communities and Local Government - Credit: Archant

A Brent MP’s mission to give tenants greater protections from rogue landlords is a step closer after the government announced plans to amend the law today.

Sarah Teather, Liberal Democrat MP for Brent Central, tabled a Private Member’s Bill which would have banned landlords from evicting tenants who make reasonable complaints or request repairs.

The ‘retaliation evictions’ resulted from rogue landlords abusing ‘section 21 notices’.

The bill was talked out in the Commons despite cross-party support for the measures but Lib Dems peers tabled amendments on revenge eviction to the Government’s Deregulation Bill in December.

Today Stephen Williams, the Lib Dem Communities Minister, announced that the government will publish their own amendments, which will add most of the provisions in Sarah’s bill to the Deregulation Bill.

He said: “We’re determined to create a bigger, better private rented sector – a key part of that is to tackle the minority of rogue landlords that blight the lives of their tenants.

“That’s why I’m proposing changes to the law that would outlaw so-called ‘revenge evictions’, so tenants don’t face the prospect of losing their home simply for asking that repairs be made.”

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There are 33,000 private rented properties in the borough with Brent Central, which includes Wembley, Willesden and Kensal Rise, having the highest numbers of private renters in the country.

Ms Teather said: “I am delighted that, thanks to the Lib Dems, the government will be introducing much needed protections for private renters up and down the country – not least in Brent, where revenge eviction is a particular problem.

“Too many people are currently forced to put up with dangerous or unsanitary conditions because they fear eviction. Understandably, they don’t want to leave their community or take their kids out of the local school - or face the costs of moving to another home.

“I pay tribute to Stephen Williams who has worked tirelessly to ensure that tenants can report problems with their properties without fear of being evicted from their home.”

Related links: Government supports in principle Bill tabled by Brent MPBrent MP Sarah Teather to table Bill in Parliament protecting private tenants

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