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The Tory Party Conference & the case for fair possessions

Article Posted - 11th October 2019

With the Government consultation on abolishing Section 21 closing tomorrow, this month we have been busy continuing to make the case for fair possessions. 

At the end of September, we ran a panel discussion at the Conservative Party Conference, titled: 21st Century housing options: Landlords, the state or the streets? The panellists were Greg Beales, Director of Policy at Shelter; Cllr John Fuller OBE, leader of South Norfolk Council; Dawn Foster, journalist and commentator for The Guardian; and Chris Norris, Director of Policy and Practice at the NLA. 

Steve Bloomfield, Deputy Editor of Prospect Magazine, chaired a lively discussion in front of a packed room. While the model of regulation for landlords was heavily debated, there was agreement that improving the court process would be vital if the Government wants to avoid a dramatic reduction in supply within the sector. 

In response to questions from the audience, the panel contended with the negative perception of landlords. Greg Beales from Shelter said, “We want more good landlords, we want fewer bad ones… It's worth twinning court reform with the removal of Section 21.” He went on to say, “This system is too confrontational at the moment,” and that he would be in favour of regulations that create a better system for everyone.  

“The biggest challenge we face as an organisation is the bad reputation of landlords,” said Chris Norris of the NLA. “Central government has driven that acrimony, which has been less than helpful.”  

You can watch highlights of the discussion on our Facebook page and YouTube

On the same day, the NLA launched its report based on research commissioned from Capital Economics on the impact of the Government's proposal, A new deal for renting? The unintended consequences of abolishing Section 21

The report, based on a survey of NLA members, found that if the Government's proposals go ahead, there could be a 20 percent reduction in the number of dwellings available in the private rented sector. Furthermore, the number of dwellings available to tenants in receipt of benefits could fall by 59 percent. 

Your chance to have your say 

Today, we will be submitting our response to the Government consultation. There is still time for landlords to respond before the deadline of tomorrow (Saturday 12 October 2019) at 11.45pm. 

You can respond online via the website

We have produced a guide to help you navigate the consultation, as well as a guide to lobbying your MP, which we'd encourage members to continue to do. 

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