THE HOUSING AND HOMELESSNESS CHARITY SHELTER has released new research on the gross insecurity of private renting in England as the  current ban on evictions by bailiffs ends today, leaving thousands of private renters across England facing eviction this summer.

The research shows:

  • 1.8 million private renting adults in England (22 per cent) are worried they will lose or be asked to leave their current home at short notice.

  • 3.2 million private renting adults in England (40 per cent) say their experience of finding and trying to keep a home makes them worry about finding another home in the future.

Previous research carried out by the charity at the end of November 2020 revealed 445,000 private renting adults in England were in arrears at the time or had been threatened with eviction by their landlord or letting agent in the past month.

Shelter is warning the government must take urgent action now to protect renters against the imminent threat of eviction and homelessness with a package of emergency financial aid. But to protect renters long-term, Shelter says the government must address the structural failings of the private rental system through its forthcoming Renters’ Reform Bill.

Polly Neate, chief executive of Shelter, said: “The lifting of the eviction ban signals the beginning of the end for many renters facing homelessness. Thousands of people will wake up on the 1st of June knowing they’ll soon be kicked out of their home, with nowhere to go.

“The ban has been a lifeline for private renters who have weathered job losses, falling incomes and rising debts in this pandemic. But what happens now? Longer notice periods, while they last, will give some worried renters valuable time. But come September, anyone facing eviction will have just weeks to find somewhere else to live.

“The government needs to do more to stem the tide of rising evictions. It cannot waver from delivering a Renters’ Reform Bill that scraps Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions altogether. And in the meantime, it must offer renters with crippling Covid-arrears a package of financial aid.”

* Shelter’s advice for private renters worried about their housing situation is available here.

* Source : Shelter