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Homelessness caused by Section 21 evictions hits highest level since 2018

  • 30/04/2024
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Homelessness caused by Section 21 evictions hits highest level since 2018
More than 25,000 households face homelessness due to Section 21 no-fault evictions, the highest level since records began in 2018.

According to data from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, 25,910 households were threatened with homelessness due to valid Section 21 notices.

This continues a trend of growth from 2020, with households facing homelessness due to no-fault evictions standing at 8,950 in 2020, rising to 19,900 in 2021 and then 24,260 in 2022.

When records started in 2018, the figure came to 19,380 and then decreased to 18,190 in 2019.

Generation Rent said that if Section 21 had been abolished this time last year, 10,000 households who were evicted by their landlord seeking to relet the property between April and December 2023 would not have faced homelessness.

However, 23,000 households faced homelessness in the same period because their landlord wanted to sell up.

The government made a manifesto promise to scrap Section 21 eviction notices in 2019, and this has been a key part of the Renters Reform Bill.

The Renters Reform Bill passed its third reading in the House of Commons earlier this month, but included changes, one of the most important of these being a delay in the abolishment of Section 21 eviction notices.

This faced much criticism, with the Renters Reform Coalition pulling its support, adding that the Renters Reform Bill would be a “failure” in its current form.

Ben Twomey, chief executive of Generation Rent, said: “Abolition of Section 21 evictions has the potential to make a huge difference to renters’ lives and reduce the number of us who have to get our council’s help to avoid homelessness.

“But the government’s current plans will leave tens of thousands of us exposed to homelessness because of the lack of protection when landlords still have a valid reason to evict us, like selling the property.”

He continued: “Renters need more time to move than the two months we currently get, and landlords who are uprooting their tenants’ lives should support us with the costs of moving. That will both reduce the stress and hardship of an unwanted move and reduce the homelessness epidemic that is currently shredding councils’ finances.”

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