NEW government data shows 2,682 households in England were removed from their homes by bailiffs as a result of Section 21 no-fault evictions between January and March. This is an increase of 19 per cent in a year and the highest number in six years.

The Ministry of Justice figures show a further 7,863 landlords in England started Section 21 no-fault eviction proceedings against their tenants in that time period, an increase of 15 per cent in a year. Nearly 29,000 households have been evicted by bailiffs since the government first promised to ban Section 21 no fault evictions five years ago.

No-fault evictions are a major contributing factor to rising homelessness because they allow landlords to evict tenants with only two months’ notice without having to give a reason. Recent government data found that no fault evictions resulted in a record 25,910 households being threatened with homelessness in 2023.

Last month, MPs ignored calls from organisations representing renters, and voted to accept amendments to the Renters (Reform) Bill. These amendments could indefinitely delay banning Section 21s and reintroduce some fixed term tenancies, prompting Shelter and others to say they could no longer support the Bill and call for serious changes to the draft legislation.

With the Bill now making its way through the House of Lords, Shelter is calling on peers from all political parties to overhaul the legislation and seize this last meaningful opportunity to strengthen the Bill and deliver lasting change for renters.

Polly Neate, chief executive of Shelter, said: “Evictions are rocketing to new heights whilst this government has put the threats of a small group of self-interested landlord backbenchers over the safety and security of 11 million private renters.

“It’s been five years since the government pledged to rebalance the scales in private renting, and what do we have to show for it? A Renters Reform Bill, left in tatters, which will keep renters trapped in the same hellish conditions they’ve endured for decades, or abandon them to the whims of their landlords and the terrifying spectre of homelessness.

“With the Bill now in the hands of the Lords, peers of all stripes must overhaul this threadbare legislation and deliver the change that renters desperately need. Without serious amends to give tenants greater protection from eviction after moving in and longer notice periods, renters’ best hope of a stable home will be lost.”

* The Ministry of Justice data is available here.

* Source: Shelter England