The Renting Homes Bill passed last week. We’ve very pleased that the most concerning part of it, removal of the 6-month moratorium (where tenants are protected from eviction in the first 6 months of every contract), was reversed.
Plaid Cymru also ensured that enabling landlords to rent to 16 and 17 year olds was removed. It was felt this took away responsibility from social services and councils for very vulnerable young people, who ought to have someone looking out for them, not a landlord taking advantage of them.
We’re also thrilled that whilst the Minister did not accept expanding the tribunal for tenants at the moment, officials are doing some work on this to look at how tribunals can help keep people out of the courts in future.
The most exciting parts of the debate were the proposals from the Welsh Lib Dems and Plaid Cymru, who have adopted much of our manifesto to ban letting agent fees, drastically improve the quality of properties, create a Tenants’ Tribunal and to consider rent controls. Labour has also expressed interest in a ‘Tenants Union’.
We’ll continue lobbying for renters’ concerns to be in all parties’ manifestos for the 2016 elections, and ensure that the many regulations under the Renting Homes Bill actually deliver for the benefit of tenants, not just landlords.
Note: You can watch the Stage 3 debate here, but it’s several hours long…! We’ll have a fuller post soon, explaining the four parties positions.