Recent changes in the rental property management industry

Published: 17th November 2023

There have been many changes you need to know about if you’re a landlord in 2023. Many of these changes have also affected the property management industry. Here are some of the biggest changes affecting the property and property management industries recently.

The Renters Reform Bill

The Renters Reform Bill was first pledged by Theresa May’s cabinet in 2019. In 2023, Michael Gove announced that it would finally be introduced. The new legislation will see the government taking a bigger role in the private rental sector.

During the recent King’s Speech, King Charles said that “renters will benefit from stronger security of tenure and better value, while landlords will benefit from reforms to provide certainty that they can regain their properties when needed” thanks to the Bill. Once the bill has made its way through parliament, it’s thought that it will come into law in early October 2024.

The Bill covers various issues including the end of no-fault evictions. Once the law is in place, landlords won’t be able to hand a Section 21 notice to their tenants either during a periodic tenancy or at the end of a fixed-term tenancy. This all means landlords won’t be permitted to remove tenants from properties without a cause until their contract has come to an end. This legislation is designed to ensure tenants no longer need to worry about surprise evictions.

Decent Homes Standard

This policy is already in place but currently only applies to social housing. Once the Renters Reform Bill becomes law, this will apply to private rentals too. This means some landlords will need to make changes to their properties to bring them up to the necessary standard. The policy is being introduced to cut the number of uninhabitable and hazardous properties on the market. When the Bill becomes law, properties will need to have adequate heating, bathroom and kitchen facilities and will also need to be both warm and dry.

Upcoming limits on rent increases

New limits on rent increases mean it won’t be possible to raise rent more than once a year. This is to prevent arbitrary and unfair rent increases. If rent is increased, landlords will need to provide two months’ notice. There will also be limits on the amount of rent payable at the start of a contract.

Pet-friendly tenancies

A new piece of legislation that’s been introduced focuses on pet-friendly tenancies. If this legislation passes, it will no longer be lawful for landlords to stop their tenants from keeping pets on their properties unless there is a valid excuse such as specific furnishings being on the property or allergies. However, landlords will be permitted to ask tenants with pets to take out pet insurance due to an amendment to the Tenant Fees Act.

EPC changes

The minimum energy-efficient rating a rental property can currently have is E, but this will be upgraded to a C by 2025. This is part of attempts to make the rental property market more sustainable. Landlords are already being encouraged to make their properties more sustainable via “green mortgages”, which provide better rates for mortgages for properties that have a C rating or above.

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