Examination of Witness

Part of Renters (Reform) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee am 2:30 pm ar 14 Tachwedd 2023.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Francesca Albanese:

We welcome the abolition of section 21. I think we have heard from others giving evidence today that it is one of the leading causes of homelessness, so that is definitely welcome. However, there are still some areas of the Bill that cause us concern with regard to homelessness. One is not automatically carrying over some of the areas of section 21 into the new ground 8. That would decouple the link around automatically triggering a homelessness prevention duty, which is currently in the Homelessness Reduction Act. We are concerned about that area—if we abolish section 21, we do not want to then disproportionately increase the risk of homelessness in other areas.

There is also an issue about the repetition of some of the rent arrears grounds. Ground 8 covers fault evictions, but ground 8A also looks at rent arrears. We do not see the reason for having both; there are suitable protections just in ground 8. The other area—which we have heard about from previous evidence—is antisocial behaviour, and making sure that the wording is tightened so that it does not cause further issues for more vulnerable tenants, and does not affect them disproportionately.