Rent Rights

Private Rented Sector Housing to be debated at parliament

On Wednesday, the Scottish Parliament will be debating a motion on reforming private rented sector housing. It’s a welcome debate, and further sign of a growing consensus that more needs to be done to bring the private rented sector up to date.

The motion for debate is in the name of Mary Fee MSP (see below), and notes the changes in the private rented sector while welcoming Shelter Scotland’s Make Renting Right campaign to reform PRS tenancies. You can read more about the campaign on the Shelter Scotland website.

Patrick is also a supporter of the Shelter Scotland campaign and will be supporting the motion. However, he has proposed an amendment to the motion (see italics), which would additionally note the Living Rent campaign and its similar calls for PRS reform, and to demand that the Scottish Government bring forward a bill in time to get legislation passed before the next Holyrood election.

Both the Make Renting Right and the Living Rent campaigns were discussed at a recent meeting in Glasgow at which Patrick also spoke.

The parliamentary debate will be tomorrow, Wednesday 3rd December, and you can watch live on the Scottish Parliament website.

S4M-11763 Mary Fee: Private Sector Rent Reform—That the Parliament notes that, over the last 10 years, the number of households in the private rented sector has doubled to 368,000; notes with concern that the number of households in poverty in the private rented sector has doubled in the last decade to 120,000; further acknowledges that, in parts of Scotland, rents have risen by nearly 40% in four years and that the average Scottish rent now stands at £537 a month; welcomes Shelter Scotland’s Make Renting Right campaign; supports its calls for reform of the private rented sector, and, in particular, believes that private rented sector tenancies should be reformed to provide tenants with greater security of tenure, including longer standard tenancies and predictable rents for tenants and landlords, including supporting in principle the introduction of a cap on rent rises and the limitation of rent reviews to one per annum. [welcomes also the Living Rent campaign, supported by NUS Scotland, which is calling for action on unfair evictions, rent rises and security of tenure, and agrees that following the current consultation on the private rented sector the Scottish Government should introduce legislation in good time to complete parliamentary consideration before the dissolution of the current session.]

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