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Renters’ Reform Bill starts a 9–12-month process

It’s likely to take between nine and 12 months before the Renters’ Reform Bill passes through parliament, meaning there’s a chance for the legislation to be altered significantly before it passes into law.

That’s according to Timothy Douglas, head of policy and campaigns at Propertymark, who said he hopes the government will successfully speed up and digitise the court process to compensate for the loss of Section 21 evictions.

He said: “From our point of view it’s significant change – it’s important that they get it right.

“Whilst we have clarity at the start of the process the bill will take 9-12 months to go through.”

He added: “For a long time digitising and speeding up the court process has been discussed – we will work with the courts of justice on that.

“Landlords and agents want to see that put into action – to target areas that hold up the process.

“If they get digitisation right that should reduce costs.

“But if they fail to resource it, that means a lack of justice for landlords and tenants.

“If the bill starts that process that’s good.”

According to Douglas landlords and agents are seeking more mandatory grounds for evictions in cases where there’s persistent non-payment of rent, where tenants refuse access to a property, and where damage to a property exceeds the deposit amount.

He added that local authorities, the judiciary and the court system all have a major role to play in helping landlords and tenants understand the changes and requirements going forward.