Contact us:
01508 493330

Latest News & Updates

← Back to News

Posted on March 31st 2015 by admin-movingin

Tenants ‘could deliberately damage properties’ to avoid eviction

Tenants trying to avoid eviction could abuse a new legal system designed to ban revenge evictions, by deliberately damaging properties.

The new Deregulation Act, which has just received Royal Assent, seeks to ban so-called retaliatory evictions, where a tenant is told to quit after complaining about the state of a property.

The new law, which comes into effect on October 1, means that a landlord who has done nothing about a legitimate repairs request will not be able to use the Section 21 procedure to regain possession of their property.

The original proposed ban on retaliatory evictions was contained in a Private Member’s Bill tabled by Sarah Teather. It was talked out by two Tory MP landlords, but its main thrusts were reintroduced by the Government as part of the Deregulation Act.

This was despite concerns expressed, notably by the Residential Landlords Association, that tenants could play the system, delaying eviction as they made successive complaints.

Now David Cox, managing director of ARLA, has expressed concerns.

He said: “The provisions in the Act designed to prevent retaliatory evictions by landlords create a number of unintended consequences.

“ARLA supports the principle of legislation seeking to stop landlords from evicting tenants in response to a genuine disrepair issue.

“The measures will mean that protections previously afforded to compliant landlords may be eroded by dishonest tenants using the new powers to defend against legitimate possession proceedings, possibly by intentionally causing damage to properties.”