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How will the new Prime Minister and Housing Secretary approach rental reform?

Landlords and tenants have a burning question about the new Housing Secretary, Simon Clarke. Will he twist? Or will he stick?

Before the government ground to a halt because of the death of Her Majesty, the new Prime Minister, Liz Truss, appointed Clarke as the Secretary of State for the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC).

And somewhere near the top of his in-tray is a copy of the controversial White Paper ‘A Fairer Private Rented Sector’ – a legislative left-over from the previous regime.  

Included among the proposals is the removal of Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions, the introduction of a Decent Homes Standard and a new digital ‘Property Portal.’

Critics argue that, overall, the White Paper would weaken landlords’ powers and drive more of them to leave the sector which is already struggling to provide sufficient homes.

So, will Clarke back the new, radical plans or will he call for a re-think?

The already long-delayed White Paper sets out to improve the rental sector and was a Conservative manifesto promise so the existing proposals surrounding rental reform are unlikely to be revoked altogether. 

Instead, we can expect them to be tweaked to reflect the new government’s agenda. Reforming legislation has already been subject to many delays and there could be yet more.

Areas of improvement for the lettings sector 

Liz Truss has already expressed concern about the amount of regulation impacting landlords in England.

A survey published by Goodlord and Vouch showed that 72% of landlords admitted legislation and regulation changes were among the top three reasons that would drive them away from the industry.

Truss has said that centralised targets will no longer be at the top of the housing agenda and Simon Clarke has supported the view, stating that: “The cult of top-down targets has become a toxic distraction and Liz Truss is right to say she would scrap them.”

Issues that are most important to Simon Clarke include: “Delivering on levelling up for communities in all parts of our country, unlocking the homes we need, and supporting the economic growth that is so central to the Government is our mission. I will give it my all.”

But although the new Prime Minister and Housing Secretary have admitted there are areas of improvement in the lettings sector, they have not yet shared precisely how they plan to tackle rental reform.

Working with an experienced, well-respected letting agent can help to stay informed and compliant during this time of change.

As a top letting agent operating across Essex and East London, here at Ideal Locations we can help you to get the most out of your rental homes. For more information on our current operations, please contact us today.

We also offer a free online valuation to give you an estimate on how much your home could be worth on the current market.