The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) has launched their Election Manifesto calling on the political parties to support the private rented sector (PRS) to help it meet growing demand. Key recommendations are (1) New measures to encourage investment in homes to rent, including changes to planning regimes and tax changes that could be used also to encourage the sale of rental properties to first time buyers. (2) More rigorous enforcement of powers to tackle the small minority of criminal operators who bring the sector into disrepute. (3) A new right for tenants to renew their tenancies for up to five years to provide more security (4) All parties committing to a period of stability in the welfare system for landlords and tenants alike.
Alan Ward, Chairman of the RLA, said “Landlords want a private rented sector that is first choice and not second best. Our sector is now the only part of the housing sector that is growing. Landlords have already responded to the increased demand for homes to rent but, with the right support, there is much more we could do. Our manifesto sets out a series of policy proposals which would help landlords play the fullest possible part in addressing our country’s housing needs.”
The RLA is encouraging mature debate on the PRS without the recent knee jerk reaction of some MPs for more red tape. Mr Ward said “Too often, discussion about private renting suggests that it is impossible to support both tenants and landlords. This false choice needs to end. The vast majority of landlords enjoy good relations with tenants living in decent accommodation. Policy needs to reflect this reality and not seek to create divisions that, in most case, simply do not exist.”