Clause 63 - Government policy on supported and temporary accommodation

Part of Renters (Reform) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:15 pm on 28 November 2023.

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Photo of Matthew Pennycook Matthew Pennycook Shadow Minister (Levelling Up, Housing, Communities and Local Government) 2:15, 28 November 2023

I thank the Minister for that answer. I fully accept that there is a difference between a large registered social landlord, and a mum-and-dad landlord, who might own only one or two buy-to-let properties. However, we should not therefore say that it is acceptable for the kinds of cases that Awaab’s law would cover, if extended to the private sector, to go on unchallenged. I am not satisfied that there are existing powers to challenge those cases. If there were such powers in the social rented sector, the Government would not have needed to bring forward Awaab’s law. Actually, if the Government were properly resourcing local authorities to enforce, Awaab’s law might not be necessary, but the Government deemed it necessary in the social rented sector.

As the Bill demonstrates, the difference between the private rented sector and the social sector will break down to some extent, whether as a result of the ombudsman, who will cover both sectors, or other measures. We think the law should cover both sectors, and I find the Minister’s response unconvincing. I will press new clause 60 to a Division.