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Rental sector trade bodies warn parties over landlord crackdown plans

Two of the UK’s largest trade organisations representing the private rental sector have voiced their concerns regarding major political parties’ pledges to impose stricter regulations on landlords. Labour, the Conservatives, Greens, and Liberal Democrats have all proposed similar policies, including banning Section 21 notices, capping rent increases, penalising landlords for damp and mould issues, preventing ‘bidding wars’, and enforcing minimum energy efficiency standards.

Concerns Over Supply Shortages
Both Propertymark and the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) have issued statements suggesting that while these policies may be popular with renters, they fail to address the fundamental issue of supply shortages in the rental market. Recent research from Savills indicates that an additional one million rented homes will be needed over the next seven years to meet demand.

Energy Efficiency Upgrades
Propertymark’s Tim Thomas expressed particular concern about Labour’s plan to require rental properties to achieve an EPC band C rating by 2030. He argued that this goal will be unachievable without financial incentives for landlords. Thomas stated, “While on the one hand the private rented sector should contribute towards decarbonisation, it needs clarity on what financial and practical support will be provided to landlords at the first opportunity.”

Addressing the Housing Crisis
Ben Beadle, Chief Executive of the NRLA, criticised the political parties for not tackling the core issue of rental housing supply. “Renters are being let down by a repeated failure to address the rental housing supply crisis. The lack of choice serves only to drive up rents and, given the shortage of alternative accommodation for them to move to, makes it harder for renters to hold rogue and criminal landlords to account,” he said.

Beadle also emphasised the importance of collaboration with the next government to ensure any replacement for Section 21 notices is effective for both landlords and tenants. “We will work with the next government to ensure the replacement for section 21 works for the sector. However, greater security for renters will mean nothing if they cannot find homes to rent in the first place,” he added.