Barry Gardiner

Working Hard for Brent North

Transforming the Private Rented Sector

With house building at it's lowest rate since the 1930s under the coalition Government, we are now seeing an entire generation who may never be able to afford to buy their own homes. The so-called Generation Rent face a lifetime in rented accommodation with rents in some parts of London increasing 17% year on year. Labour has committed to transforming the private rented sector and Barry has set out his position below:

Labour is committed to reforming private renting so that renters get a fairer deal. We have been clear that 1970s-style rent controls are not the right way forward but we have set out a new model that gives renters a better deal and also works for landlords.

Private renting is now the norm for millions of families with many now settling in the private rented sector. But the rules on private renting have not caught up with that fact which means that people are struggling with the growing cost of renting and with the insecurity and uncertainty built into the rental market.

In England nine million people are renting from a private landlord including over a million families, and over two million children. They are now paying on average over £1000 a year more in rent than they did in 2010. They face rip-off charges by letting agents, unpredictable jumps in their rent and insecure tenancies.

These problems affect too many people. That’s why we need to take action to reform the private rented sector so tenants and landlords can both get a fair deal. 

The next Labour government will change the law to make three-year tenancies the norm and protect against excessive rent increases within these contracts to give tenants the stability they deserve.  And we will also take action to ban unfair letting agent fees for tenants, saving renters an average of £350 in costs. We have also set out plans to introduce a national register of landlords and increase flexibility for local authorities to introduce licensing schemes in order to drive up standards across the sector.

The private rental market has changed and now the law has to as well. We won’t get the change we need under the Tories. Together we can improve the private rented sector to end the unfairness and make it work for working people.

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