35 Peterborough families ‘unfairly evicted’ in 2020

More than 30 families in Peterborough were ‘unfairly evicted’ in 2020, it has been claimed.

By Joel Lamy
Thursday, 10th June 2021, 4:54 am

Last year, 27 families were evicted due to the landlord wishing to sell or re-let the property, five from the tenant complaining to the city council/agent/landlord about disrepair, and three from illegal evictions.

The figures have all come from government data.

All three categories have been classed as “unfair evictions” by Generation Rent which said ending them could reduce homelessness nationally by nine per cent - saving taxpayers £161 million per year.

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In particular, the organisation is pushing for the Government to go ahead with its commitment to ban Section 21 ‘no fault evictions’.

The Peterborough Telegraph has also campaigned on this issue after highlighting the plight of residents living in St Michael’s Gate in Parnwell who were evicted to allow the homeowners to make more money by bringing in homeless families who they could charge more to accommodate.

According to Generation Rent, figures from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government show that out of 755,250 households made homeless or threatened with homelessness between April 2018 and December 2020, 140,950 had been in a private assured shorthold tenancy (19 per cent).

Of these households, 68,430 had faced an ‘unfair eviction’ - either following a complaint about disrepair or due to their landlord selling or re-letting the property (49 per cent of private rented sector cases and nine per cent of the total).

It said in 2019/20, the most recent year for which there are figures, councils in England spent £543 million on prevention, administration and support activities around homelessness, and that each of the 289,810 homelessness cases that year cost councils an average of £1,874 to respond to.

It is now recommending five reforms to give renters greater long-term security in their home:

. Open ended tenancies

. More time to find a new home

. Compensation for a blameless move

. No excessive rent increases to force an eviction

. No mandatory evictions for people in rent debt.

Alicia Kennedy, director of Generation Rent, said: “The Government’s commitment to abolishing Section 21 means that landlords will no longer be able to evict tenants just for requesting repairs or on other spurious grounds.

“But without further protections tenants could still face hardship and homelessness if their landlord decides to sell up. It cannot be right for a housing provider to leave their customer in the lurch and expect tenants and taxpayers to pick up the bill.

“Renters can never enjoy a stable life if they can have the rug pulled from under them, so the Government’s reforms must make sure renters get proper support during unwanted moves.”