Propertymark calls for retention of fixed-term tenancies in UK rental reform

Propertymark has called for the retention of fixed-term tenancies in the private rental sector where it is mutually beneficial for both parties.

Propertymark was the only membership body for property agents represented at the first sitting of the Public Bill Committee on Tuesday 14th November 2023 regarding the Renters Reform Bill.   

Timothy Douglas, head of policy and campaigns at Propertymark, emphasised the need for tenant choice between fixed-term and periodic tenancies, highlighting the importance of flexibility, particularly in student lettings.

Douglas stressed the necessity for improvements in the redress schemes for letting agents and landlords, including enhanced powers to issue fines.

He also pointed out the urgency for clear court guidance on anti-social behavior cases and prioritisation of these cases by the courts.

He underscored the need for a comprehensive housing strategy from the UK Government, addressing aspects like taxes, welfare, social housing, and energy efficiency.

Douglas also discussed the complexities in student lettings, suggesting the allowance of fixed-term tenancies for properties with student tenants.

The Renters Reform Bill, introduced on 17 May 2023, aims to simplify processes for landlords to repossess properties, enable tenant appeals against rent increases, and allow tenants to request pets.

The bill is progressing through Parliament, with expectations of receiving Royal Assent before the next General Election.