Latest News

Surge in the number of prospective tenants seeking properties

26 February 2021

ARLA Propertymark’s first Private Rented Sector Report covering January shows the number of new prospective tenants rose by more than 27 per cent compared to December 2020 indicating no sign of demand slowing down. Read More...

Renting Homes (Amendment) (Wales) Bill introduced

24 February 2021

The Welsh Government has announced the introduction of the Renting Homes (Amendment) (Wales) Bill which extends the minimum notice period from two to six months alongside other new provisions and will be implemented before the end of its current Assembly (May 2021). Read More...

Landlord case makes legal history

24 February 2021

A Wales based landlord pleaded guilty to harassing a tenant, which is the first time a case of this nature has been brought to the Crown Court and received a six-month jail term suspended for two years. Read More...

Property expert Nathan Emerson becomes Interim CEO of Propertymark

24 February 2021

The Board of Propertymark has asked Nathan Emerson to assume the role of Interim CEO with immediate effect. Nathan’s appointment will provide great stability for the organisation, its staff and its members and will ensure that the operational delivery of its new and exciting strategy is taken forward. Read More...

Increased asymptomatic testing for anyone unable to work from home

23 February 2021

The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) is expanding asymptomatic COVID-19 testing which will be available for workforces via two different routes: either the workplace or community testing. Read More...

Extension on suspension of evictions

Monday 08 June 2020

The Government announced on 5 June 2020 that the suspension of evictions has been extended in England and Wales for a further two months meaning that landlords will continue to be unable to start proceedings to evict tenants.

Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick MP specified the extension which takes the moratorium on evictions up until the end of August and to a total of five months “to ensure that renters continue to have certainty and security.”

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

The Government has asked that agents and landlords work with tenants who are experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the pandemic and exhaust all possible options – such as flexible payment plans which take into account a tenant’s individual circumstances – to ensure cases only end up in court as an absolute last resort.

NEW AND EXISTING POSSESSION CLAIMS

Importantly, the change in law only applies to notices served on or after 26 March 2020. From 27 March 2020, the court service suspended all ongoing housing possession action. This means that neither cases either currently in or about to go in the system can progress to the stage where someone could be evicted. This suspension of housing possessions action initially lasted for 90 days but has been extended until the end of August.

THE COURT SYSTEM

The Government said it was working with the judiciary to draw up new legal guidance which would ensure the courts were “better able to address the need for appropriate protection of all parties, including those shielding from Coronavirus”.

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Protecting vulnerable people has been our priority throughout this pandemic. Extending this ban will give people invaluable security in these turbulent times and work continues at pace to ensure vulnerable renters remain protected long after the ban ends.

Robert Buckland QC MP, Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice

The announcement builds on the radical package of measured taken during these difficult times to protect both renters and landlords affected by Coronavirus, including:

  • The introduction of emergency legislation so landlords won’t be able to start proceedings to evict tenants for at least a three-month period which will remain in place until at least September.
  • Extending mortgage payment holdings to include landlords whose tenants are experiencing financial difficulties due to the pandemic.
  • Supporting businesses to continue to pay their staff through the furlough scheme, as well as strengthening the welfare safety net with a nearly £7 billion boost to the welfare system and increasing Local Housing Allowance.
  • Delivering £180 million in Discretionary Housing Payments to councils across the country to support renters with housing costs in the private and social rented sectors.
  • Guidance helps agents, landlords, and tenants to work together to resolve issues at the earliest opportunity.

More information for landlords and agents on renting during the pandemic can be found on the GOV.UK website below.

Guidance

WHAT PROPERTYMARK IS DOING

Citizens Advice has recently gained widespread media coverage by claiming that 2.6m households will have missed a rent payment, or expect to do so, owing to the virus. ARLA Propertymark has been gathering information from members about the extent of rent arrears building in the private rented sector in order to provide the most accurate and up to date picture to the Government so that they can make informed, evidence-based decisions rather than policy based on this sort of conjecture.

For help and guidance through this difficult time, Propertymark has created a series of informational guides and fact sheets in the members' area.

COVID-19 resources