Renters (Reform) Bill reportedly dropped ahead of General Election

Reports have emerged today suggesting that the long-awaited Renters (Reform) Bill has been dropped by Parliament in the face of the upcoming General Election.

The report stemmed from both Government and opposition sources, and the Bill itself does not appear on the Order of Business in the House of Lords today.  

The Government has had since 2019 to pass this Bill and abolish Section 21 no-fault evictions, and has thus far failed to do so.

The Bill was delayed on numerous occasions by a minority of pro-landlord MPs.

Ben Twomey, chief executive of Generation Rent, said: “Abandoning the Renters Reform Bill as Parliament dissolves means the Government has failed in its promise to renters at the last election to deliver a fairer tenancy system.

“If it had not been for delays caused by a minority of MPs opposing the Bill, the Government could enter the election campaign with a new law to end Section 21 evictions and bring in stronger protections for renters.

“It now falls to the next Parliament to start afresh and get it right at the second time of asking.

“Whoever forms the next Government must make rental reform a key part of their agenda.

“This means proper protections from evictions when we have done nothing wrong, and limits on unaffordable rent rises so we can’t be turfed on to the streets at a landlords’ whim.”

Ben Beadle, chief executive of the National Residential Landlords Association, said: “If true, it is hugely disappointing that this Bill will not now make it into law.

“The news comes despite the fact that the Bill was in a state which would work for tenants and responsible landlords.

“There has been too much dither and delay in government, and a failure to be clear about how to ensure changes would work in practice.

“Critically, the market now faces yet more crippling uncertainty about what the future of the private rented sector looks like.

“Reforming the sector will be an important issue for the next government and we will work constructively with them to ensure changes are fair and workable.

“That means empowering tenants to challenge rogue and criminal landlords whilst ensuring the confidence of responsible landlords to stay in the market.”