Concerns Over Renters Reform Escalate As Housing Bill Author Resigns Post

Eddie Hughes, the MP for Walsall North, and head of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has resigned.

Hughes is the architect of the Renters Reform Bill that is going through formal evidence sessions in Parliament. He is also the author of the white paper that supports the bill. The white paper is called "A Fairer Private Rented Sector." It was published last 16 June 2022 and covers the proposals in the reform bill. Hughes' resignation last 8 September 2022 stirred even more concern and uncertainty in the private rented sector.

Tackling Sections Of The Renters Reform Bill That Compromises Landlords

Hughes’ renters reform proposals have caused a commotion in the private rented sector. One of these reforms is the outright ban of Section 21 evictions. This proposed ban is a primary concern and a source of great worry for many landlords and property investors.

The ban effectively removes any protection that landlords and property investors have for evicting tenants with anti-social (even criminal) behaviour.

There has been no updates yet on who Hughes’ replacement will be. For now, two new ministers have been appointed to the DLUHC committee: Dehenna Davison and Lee Rowley.

Davison is MP for the Bishop Auckland constituency while Rowley, MP for the North East Derbyshire constituency. Both have been appointed Parliamentary Undersecretaries of State at the DLUHC.

Letting a Property

PRS and Housing Market Leaders Hope For Fair And Balanced Reforms

Despite this, leaders and experts in the private rented sector and the housing market are optimistic. And they are ready to work with Hughes’ replacement. Timothy Douglas, head of policy and campaigns for Propertymark, states that working with the next Housing minister will be crucial.

This is because the government is determined to make reforms in the private rented sector. Working with the next housing minister may help create more balanced renters reforms. It is hoped that the next minister will be open to making changes to the bill. Changes that will help ensure these renters reforms are fair, balanced, and effective. Giving neither tenants nor landlords an advantage over the other, and ensuring all processes are effective for overseeing the PRS.

Last 5 September 2022, the DLUHC began its formal evidence sessions for the Renters Reform Bill. It also launched an enquiry that will examine the government’s position and plans for reforming the private rented sector. (Read more about the white paper by clicking on Part 1 and Part 2.)

The committee is inviting industry leaders, PRS organisations, and individual landlords and property investors to an open consultation through an online survey that will run through to 14 October 2022. 

Want to know more about the private renting sector, compliance legislation, and the ongoing enquiry that affects our industry? Book a chat or call our team today on 02079236100.

Brett Alegre-wood
September 13, 2022

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