United Kingdom

Welsh rental reforms postponed

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The Welsh government has delayed its flagship rental reform bill for six months.

The Renting Homes (Wales) Act was due to come into force on 15 July, but will now only take effect on 1 December. The law is set to bring radical change to rental rules in Wales: introducing six-month notice periods for no-fault evictions; imposing stricter rules on the condition and repair of properties,; and replacing older types of private tenancy with new “standard contracts”. 

In a statement the Welsh government’s Minister for Climate Change Julie James said the delay would give landlords more time to get ready for the new rules. However, lettings industry group Propertymark pointed out that the Act has had royal assent for six years, and that the government has not yet published all the necessary regulations. 

Private and social landlords welcomed the extra time, but opposition parties and activist groups were less happy. Plaid Cymru, which has a co-operation agreement with the ruling Welsh Labour party, said the delay lets tenants down at a time when they need the extra protection from eviction. Meanwhile, Shelter Cymru warned that landlords were ramping up evictions ahead of the new regulations.

Landlords and agents will now have to hope that the Welsh government uses the delay productively. If the outstanding regulations are not released soon, landlords could still have to adapt uncomfortably quickly.

Other devolved policy headlines

Public purse to lose out over £150m due to holiday homes loophole – Welsh Business News

SNP rejects Right to Buy scheme in Scotland – Daily Record

Propertymark policy manager joins cross-party housing group – Scottish Housing News

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