Propertymark launches Housing Coalition committed to fairer renting

Propertymark has collaborated with other sector organisations, forums and landlord associations to coordinate the launch of a Housing Coalition committed to fairer renting. 

The Housing Coalition held its first meeting at Propertymark’s headquarters in London on Wednesday 22nd November 2023, in order to launch the group in person following several online meetings. 

The guest speaker at the meeting was Andrew Lewer MP, the Conservative MP for Northampton South, member of the House of Commons Levelling Up, Housing and Communities Committee and chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Private Rented Sector. 

The Housing Coalition was made up of organisations that represent landlords and property agents, or work directly within private rented sector housing.

The group was formed to allow a collaborative voice to improve standards within the sector, make private renting fairer for the benefit of landlords, agents, and tenants alike, and to provide an environment for landlords and agents to support housing needs. 

Membership includes Propertymark, Possession Friend, iHowz, North East Landlords Association, Safe Agent, Property 118, Property Tribes, Cornwall Residential Landlords Association, Greater Yarmouth Landlords Association, Humber and District Landlords Association, Portsmouth and District Landlords Association, Northwest Landlords Association, and Scottish Association of Landlords.

The Coalition said it was keen to expand membership to include organisations that are supportive of improving the supply, quality and environment for private rental sector housing. 

In addition, it voiced its support for the Renters (Reform) Bill, and aims to jointly campaign to ensure the needs of landlords, agents and the private rental sector are being heard. 

This includes the challenge of moving from fixed terms from period, which may adversely impact student lets, local authorities having adequate resources to maintain standards within the private rental sector and that the Government introduces pro-growth measures to stimulate the supply of private rental sector properties. 

In terms of legal and court reform, while the Housing Coalition recognised that the abolishment of Section 21 may have an adverse impact on the sector, it further recognised cross-party support to improve security of tenure by abolishing Section 21 and ensuring landlords seek possession via the courts. 

It also made a commitment to improving standards within the private rental sector. According to the group, the introduction of the Decent Homes Standard must be tailored to the private rented sector; local authorities have a key role in improving standards and need more support and with the UK Government committed to meeting Net Zero by 2050 landlords can help but they need financial and taxation incentives.

Tim Thomas, policy and campaigns officer at Propertymark, who leads on the secretariat for the Housing Coalition, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for Propertymark and other leading sector organisations, forums and landlord associations to collaborate and make sure that our voices are heard when it comes to reforming the private rental sector.

“There is so much more work that needs to be done on improving standards, legal and court reform, and the upcoming Renters Reform Bill.

“It was fantastic to have the support of Andrew Lewer MP at our launch so that we can ensure our voices are heard by politicians.

“By working together and harnessing our collective experiences, knowledge, data and case studies from across the country we can challenge policy makers and bring about positive change going forward.” 

Chris Daniels, from Possession Friend, added: “The housing position for so many across the country has descended to such levels that everyone involved or interested in housing should collaborate with the Housing Coalition to discuss potential improvement.”