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Landlords question new ombudsman

Half of landlords (48%) are unsure whether a private rented sector ombudsman is a good idea, Landbay research has revealed.

Landlords would be forced to sign up to the service, which would impartially resolve disputes between private renters and landlords without going to court, according to proposals in the government’s Renters Reform Bill.

However some landlords are worried the ombudsman would always side with tenants, while they also suggest it could become something of a money-making scheme.

Others question whether it would speed up disputes, noting that that government-run departments are very slow and adding another layer could worsen things.

Paul Brett, managing director, intermediaries at Landbay, said: “Our survey found uncertainty around the idea of a Private Rented Sector Ombudsman.

“On the positive side, it would be good if disputes could be quickly resolved without having to go to court, but there is some scepticism as to how quick this would be.

“It appears that more information is needed before such as scheme is created.”

While most are unsure about a new ombudsman, only 10% are firmly against it, with 42% thinking it’s a good idea.

Landlords who support the scheme are keen to point out that it must be impartial and would welcome timely resolution of disputes rather than lengthy court cases.

The Renters Reform Bill had its first reading in the House of Commons in May but is not expected to pass into law until 2024 or even 2025.