Private Rented Housing: Coronavirus

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 16th September 2020.

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Photo of Lord Beecham Lord Beecham Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they plan to take to ensure that private tenants who have fallen into rent arrears as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic will not be liable for eviction.

Photo of Lord Greenhalgh Lord Greenhalgh Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government), The Minister of State, Home Department

To enable tenants to continue to pay their living costs, the Government has implemented a strong package of financial support. This includes support for business to pay staff salaries through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, £9.3 billion of additional support through the welfare system this year and an increase of the Local Housing Allowance rate to the 30th percentile.

The stay on possession proceedings has been extended until 20 September 2020, meaning that in total no tenant can have been legally evicted for six months at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Legislation has also been introduced that means, from 29 August 2020 until 31 March 2021, landlords must give tenants six months’ notice before they can evict in most circumstances, apart from the most serious cases.? The extension of the stay on possession proceedings and changes to notice periods will ensure those most at risk will be protected and provide time for tenants to agree a solution with their landlord if they are unable to pay their rent or consider moving to avoid building up unsustainable debt.

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