Renters want rent control – and it’s not just about the money
Renters want rent control – and it’s not just about the money

There’s no doubt that private renters are being hit hard by the housing emergency. With rents on the rise and the prospect of eviction hanging over our heads, it’s no surprise there’s an appetite for something to be done. Are rent controls the answer? What do renters themselves think?

A new study by the Fabian Society gives an insight into what renters think about when we talk about controlling rents – and it isn’t necessarily what you’d think.

The study, … Read more

Happy 70th Birthday, Legal Aid!
Happy 70th Birthday, Legal Aid!

The aftermath of the Second World War saw the birth of our great welfare state. Four pillars provided the safety net people needed to ensure a minimum standard of living: decent and safe homes, healthcare for all, benefits for those struggling and education for children.

The unsung hero, which was never included in the welfare state’s four pillars, is legal aid, which celebrates its 70th birthday today.

While it may not feature in the top four, legal aid was, and … Read more

Sadiq Khan’s vision for a post-Section 21 world
Sadiq Khan’s vision for a post-Section 21 world

In a hopeful day for London’s renters, the Mayor has shared his vision for private renting.

For too long, renters in the capital and across the country have been denied the security they need in the place they call home. With insecure tenancies and spiralling costs, people who rent are at the mercy of their landlord. Too often they are unable to put down roots in the place they live.

But now Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s London Blueprint lays … Read more

Scotland is proof we must abolish Section 21
Scotland is proof we must abolish Section 21

New research by Shelter shows that Scottish renters have been reaping the benefits of open-ended tenancies since the introduction of the Private Residential Tenancy (PRT) in December 2017.  

These new tenancies are helping renters worry less about becoming homeless, worry less about getting locked into inflexible fixed term tenancies, and giving them more faith in politicians. 

With the prospect of open-ended tenancies on the horizon for English renters, the early signs from Scotland show that they too stand to benefit from greater security of tenure.

Scottish… Read more
Ending unfair evictions will help prevent homelessness
Ending unfair evictions will help prevent homelessness

This week, the government announced plans to abolish Section 21 evictions, meaning that private renters can no longer be evicted unless their landlord has a legitimate reason to do so. This is a historic change which will offer Britain’s 11 million private renters the security they have too long been denied.

Shelter has long campaigned for greater security for those living in the private rented sector, from families to older people. And this is an outstanding victory for those who … Read more

Private renters’ rights just got stronger
Private renters’ rights just got stronger

From today, private renters will benefit from an extra layer of security. New regulations introduced by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) will protect both tenants and landlords’ money – such as deposits and rent payments – from theft or misuse while being held by letting agents.

We strongly supported this introduction of mandatory Client Money Protection (CMP) and have long argued for better protections against unscrupulous letting agents for both renters and landlords.

What was the… Read more
The real cost of legal aid cuts
The real cost of legal aid cuts

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has finally released its long-overdue report into the impact of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO). The act removed access to legal advice in all benefit and most debt cases overnight, drastically reducing the number of housing cases covered by legal aid. Now the MoJ concedes it has achieved just one of its four original objectives: to make significant savings to the legal aid bill.

We welcome the MoJ’s recognition … Read more

Legal aid: the missing cornerstone of renters’ rights
Legal aid: the missing cornerstone of renters’ rights

Access to justice is a fundamental human right – but one that is increasingly difficult to exercise.

Since the introduction of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO), thousands of people are unable to access legal advice for help with benefits and debt problems, or with other tenancy issues at an early stage – so much so that the number of new benefit cases opened under legal aid has dropped by 99% since 2013.

This means … Read more