Almost a third of Tory MPs trying to water down Renters Reform Bill are landlords

Almost a third of the MPs attempting to make amendments to the Renters Reform Bill are landlords, analysis has revealed.

MPs including Bob Blackman, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Desmond Swayne, Marco Longhi and Geoffrey Clifton-Brown are pressing for changes to the long-awaited Renters Reform Bill, with a view to making it easier for landlords to evict tenants for antisocial behaviour.

A total of 47 Conservative backbenchers have signed amendments that housing campaigners argue will “gut” legislation, while there are growing concerns that the reforms, initially proposed in 2019, will not be introduced before the general election.

According to an analysis of the register of members’ financial interests by the Renters’ Reform Coalition, a campaign group, 14 of the MPs backing the changes to the bill are landlords, renting out a combined 52 homes.

The MPs also want to force Michael Gove, the secretary of state for levelling up, housing and communities, to review the operation of county courts before banning Section 21 evictions.

In addition, they want the existing fixed-term tenancy system to continue in certain circumstances, instead of allowing tenants more flexibility to end tenancies where they need to.

Tom Darling, the campaign manager of the Renters’ Reform Coalition, said: “Those making money out of our broken housing system should not be holding up and watering down reforms to give renters more rights.

“That these landlord MPs are now choosing to sign amendments to water down, delay or even stop altogether these vital reforms is shocking. We are now worried that the government will try to do a deal with these MPs to get a bill passed that offers little improvement for renters.”

Responding to the analysis, Desmond Swayne MP, who rents out two properties, said his interests were properly declared and parliamentary debate on the bill was not holding it up.

“There is a proper debate to be had as to whether the extent of the proposals will reduce the availability of rented accommodation and so make greater difficulties for potential tenants,” he told the press. “In a democracy, it is right that these arguments be heard. If supporters of the proposals want their way, they need to win the argument, rather than slinging mud and making false assertions.”

Housing secretary Michael Gove has insisted that Section 21 evictions will be “outlawed” in England by the next general election.

Michael Gove

The Conservative party‘s 2019 manifesto pledged to end the right of landlords to evict tenants without needing a reason in 2019.

However, the legislation has been continuously delayed, leading housing campaigners to question the government’s commitment.

But the government has previously said a ban cannot be enacted until the court system is improved – a position supported by the National Residential Landlords Association.

In October last year, MPs started debating the Renters (Reform) Bill, which includes a ban on Section 21 evictions in England, but the legislation has not yet completed its passage through Parliament.

Asked earlier this month if he could guarantee the practice would end by the time of the next general election, which must take place by the end of January 2025, Gove told the BBC’s Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg programme: “We will have outlawed it and we will have put the money into the courts in order to ensure that they can enforce that.”

A spokesperson for the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities said: “Our landmark renters (reform) bill will deliver a fairer private rented sector for both tenants and landlords. It will abolish section 21 evictions – giving people more security in their homes and empowering them to challenge poor practices. The bill will return to the House of Commons shortly.”

The landlord Conservative MPs who have backed amendments to the Renters Reform Bill:

Nick Fletcher, MP for Don Valley – 10 properties

Marco Longhi, MP for Dudley North – 10 properties

Bob Blackman, MP for Harrow East – 6 properties

Geoffrey Clinton-Brown, MP for The Cotswolds – 5 properties

James Gray, MP for North Wiltshire – 4 properties

Royston Smith, MP for Southampton, Itchen – 3 properties

Craig Mackinlay, MP for South Thanet – 3 properties

Desmond Swayne, MP for New Forest West – 2 properties

Jacob Rees-Mogg, MP for North East Somerset – 2 properties

Anne Marie Morris, MP for Newton Abbot – 2 properties

Philip Dunne, MP for Ludlow – 2 properties

Bill Wiggin, MP for North Herefordshire – 1 property

Steve Double, MP for St Austell and Newquay – 1 property

Theresa Villiers, MP for Chipping Barnet – 1 property

Source: Register of Members’ Financial Interests/Renters’ Reform Coalition



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  1. JMK

    There is no situation so bad that cannot be made worse by Mr Gove.

  2. BillyTheFish

    Should MPs be able to vote on anything where they have a vested financial interest?
    It’s seems completely illogical if the aim is to obtain the best result.
    Govt is a medieval system needing an overhaul

    1. NW.Landlord

      Does this include any MP who has a family member that rents including students? Out of interest how would any vote on taxes, property purchasing, employment laws, pensions etc be carried out?

  3. NW.Landlord

    So less than a third of the MP’s who want it changed own rental property – 2/3rds who want it changed dont? The fact that some landlords have an i mput can only be a good thing. I wonder how many MP’s have a family member who rents – has that been asked?

  4. frostieclaret87

    Has anyone thought that if the legislation goes through how many will sell up and no longer be landlords? Will the state fill the gap?

    1. Paulson

      “Will the state fill the gap?”

      Most likely institutionally funded build to rent developments

      1. LVW4

        BTR is targeting the higher end of the rental market. Those who want to rent and can afford better quality. This should leave the lower end of the market for the ‘smaller’ landlord. Except, it won’t, because they are already leaving in droves. So, who will pick up the demand?

  5. Highstreetblues

    Good. At least some MPs know how the sector operates, and can see the poor legislation that the RRB is. It needs scrapping.

  6. CSM

    How is 14 MP’s almost a third of all Tory MP’s?

    1. Retiredandrelaxed

      It’s not.

      “Almost a third of the MPs attempting to make amendments to the Renters Reform Bill are landlord” – “attempting to make ammenments” is the key phrase

      1. CSM

        So Two thirds attempting to make reforms are not. This article just proves its not just landlords that think the RRB is not fit for purpose as it stands. It does nothing to help landlords shift bad tenants and nothing for tenants who in the main do not suffer from terrible landlords and will just find this is yet another reason for smaller landlords – say the over 50’s looking at a BTL’s as a sort of pension pot – deciding it is not for them and getting out.

        It seems to be based on media hype around a few bad landlords and a desire to pull focus from the real problem here – councils effectively dealing with the rogues and a complete lack of social housing stock.

  7. aSalesAgent

    Their “analysis” doesn’t mean much if they don’t, for comparison, also provide the percentage of backbenchers who have NOT signed amendments but are also landlords? A third perhaps?

  8. LVW4

    Two thirds of MPs making amendments… are not landlords! That would make for much more informative reading.

  9. AcornsRNuts

    No mention of Labour landlords like Lammy? How dare these MPs who have actual experience of the PRS, unlike Gormless Gove, have any input on the RRB.

  10. PRS is fun

    I sometimes wonder what agenda the sector media has

    1. LVW4

      Tory + landlord = a toxic mixture!

  11. KByfield04

    This means 2/3 of those seeking changes AREN’T landlords- isn’t the majority more relevant? What is more- so what!? This is literally how democracy works. Many of the pushbacks are around policies that are impractical or unenforceable.


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