Around 400,000 renters told to expect eviction notices

Around 400,000 renting households, or 5% of all renters, have either been served an eviction notice or have been told they may be evicted, it has been claimed.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF)  is waning that about a million renting households are worried about being evicted in the next three months – 11% of all renters – now that the eviction ban has come to an end.

The temporary ban on bailiff-enforced evictions introduced in March last year and extended several times since, provided much-needed security to renters at a time of profound economic and social disruption.

However, a new survey of over 10,000 households, commissioned by JRF and conducted by YouGov, reveals clear warning signs that point to a spike in evictions now that the ban has been lifted.

In addition to the 400,000 already expecting to be evicted, around 450,000 households are currently in arrears with rent and almost a fifth of this group – 18% – have been in arrears for more than four months, meaning landlords in England will only be required to give four weeks’ notice of eviction when the ban lifts.

Joseph Rowntree Foundation economist Rachelle Earwaker said many renters in low income work had lost their livelihoods in the pandemic and ending the eviction ban risks “a two-tier recovery”.

Earwaker said: “The government’s stated aim to support more people into home ownership does not stack up with its decision to ignore the growing issue of rent arrears. For the 450,000 families locked in rent debt, the prospect of securing a mortgage is simply unimaginable and worse still, many will now struggle to secure a new home in the private rented sector just as the eviction ban ends.

“High levels of arrears are restricting families’ ability to pay the bills and forcing many to rely on hidden borrowing. This is not only deeply unjust, it is also economically naïve, and risks hampering our economic recovery, which is reliant on household spending increasing as society continues to reopen. The Government’s decision to provide a generous tax break to wealthier homeowners through the stamp duty holiday while failing to protect renters points to a worrying two-tier recovery in which those who were prospering prior to the pandemic will continue to do so, while those who have been hit hard will sink even further behind.

“The cost of boosting support to tackle rent arrears is a fraction of the cost of the stamp duty holiday. If we are to experience an economic recovery which benefits everyone across the country, the Government must urgently take action on rent arrears.”

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9 Comments

  1. Will2

    Highlights government failures and councils selling off social housing.

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  2. PossessionFriendUK39

    Scare-mongering and exaggeration.    What exactly are JRF  proposing, –  that Tenants be given Free groceries,  petrol and  RENT  ?

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    1. jan - byers

      Everything can be free – vote Labour

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  3. A W

    At the end of the day social housing needs a top down restructure. Tenants cannot be re-housed by council’s until they have been received a court order otherwise a council would claim that they have made themselves intentionally homeless. I can’t be the only one that sees the problem with this:

    – it increases arrears

    – it increases court timescales

    – it increases bailiff timescales

    – it increases legal costs

    – it increases the stress and emotional trauma of the tenant

    – it increases admin and paperwork for everyone

    – it increases the timescale for landlords to get possession

    Literally nobody benefits from this model. Councils need to change the way in which they approach this matter seeking to re-house those who cannot afford to pay BEFORE it comes to court. All it is, is a delaying tactic; “why deal with it today when someone else can deal with it tomorrow?”. I know it is unfair on councils as a lot of them work hard with what they have, however the system is designed to maximise the time taken to remove someone from a property &  then re-house them.

    Lets be clear, the problem is not with landlords… nor indeed with the vast majority of tenants who’ve been placed in untenable situations. The solution is not to throw cash at the problem as JRF appear to want to do. But it is to identify and treat the cause… not the symptoms.

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    1. Will2

      Unfortunately a number of councils are ROUGE COUNCILS who do not comply with government guidelines and insist tenants wait for a warrant of execution and bailiffs.  By doing so they incite the tenant to put themselves in contempt of court by not complying with a court order for possession. Most unprofessional by those who our highly suspect government give enforcement powers to!

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  4. jeremy1960

    Isn’t the chap at Joseph Rowntree formerly one of the doom mongerers from the gov funded shelter? Seems he also went to the same maths school as acabus abbott, ask 3 people a question record the answers you like and then multiply by the combined ages of all the MPs in parliament to get the answer you want. No need for truth or facts to get in the way.

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    1. Gloslet

      ‘survey of over 10,000 households’

      but how many responses ?

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  5. Jim S

    Appalling failure by the British Government who have abused private landlords in a manner that that certain Communist Governments would be proud of!

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    1. PossessionFriendUK39

      Yes Jim,  and NRLA   should be ashamed of themselves.

      The only way forward,  is for all the regional Landlord groups to come together,  like the Fair Possession Coalition.

      That way,  they  collectively will represent more Landlords than NRLA  who will be ‘forced’  to join and participate in a committee of different groups.

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