Private Rented Sector

Part of Opposition Day — [2nd Allotted Day] – in the House of Commons at 12:37 pm on 25th June 2014.

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Photo of Emma Reynolds Emma Reynolds Shadow Minister (Housing) 12:37 pm, 25th June 2014

Indeed. I have before me a press release from the Secretary of State, which contains plenty of warm words but no action.

Let me explain further the second element of our proposals, to which there has been an hysterical reaction from, in particular, the Conservative party. I must make it clear, in order to avoid any more ridiculous misinterpretation, that the Labour party is not proposing a return to 1970s rent control. We are proposing that landlords and tenants should agree and set initial rents based on market value, and should conduct rent reviews no more often than once a year.

As Ministers will know, there are different housing markets in different parts of the country. In areas of lower demand there is not a great deal of pressure on rents, but in areas of high demand, real problems are caused by excessive rent increases. We propose that there should be an upper ceiling on any rent increases. That works well in Ireland, Spain and other parts of the world.