City leaders call for rent freeze and eviction ban in England

The mayors of three of England’s largest cities have called for the introduction of a rent freeze and a ban on evictions to assist renters in coping with the cost-of-living crisis.

The London Renters Union coordinated an open letter to the levelling up secretary, Michael Gove, that was signed by various notable figures, including Andy Burnham, the mayor of Manchester, as well as Steve Rotheram and Sadiq Khan, the mayors of Liverpool and London, respectively. Additionally, the letter was signed by the co-leaders of the Green party and several trade union leaders, among other signatories.

“A rent freeze would immediately relieve pressure on millions of people and halt an eviction crisis that would have a devastating social impact, and cost local councils and the government millions,” the letter said.

A freeze on rents and ban on evictions in England would follow measures implemented by the Scottish government last September. However, the freeze north of the border is to be replaced by a 3% cap on rent rises from 1 April 2023, with 6% hikes and evictions permitted in certain circumstances.

The letter to Gove drew attention to data showing that private renters in the UK spent four to five times more on housing costs compared to homeowners in the 2021 financial year. It also referred to a survey conducted in the previous year by Generation Rent, which indicated that only 11% of landlords who increased their rates cited their own increasing mortgage expenses as a reason.

The letter said that “rents have been skyrocketing across the UK, rising fastest in Manchester, Bristol, Sheffield and Birmingham, reaching as high as 20.5%”. It added: “Rents in London have gone up 17.8% on average last year, and rent increases of 30% to 50% are increasingly common.”

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities said: “We recognise the pressures brought on by the rising cost of living, which is why we delivered £1,200 of direct support to millions of households last year, including £400 towards energy costs, and will be providing a further £1,350 of support to the most vulnerable households over the next year.”

A spokesperson for the department told The Guardian that “evidence shows rent controls in the private sector do not work, leading to declining standards and a lack of investment and may encourage illegal subletting”.


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  1. MrManyUnits

    I’m issuing notices just before the budget, obviously if nothing major happens I’ll withdraw them the next day citing the government indecisiveness.

  2. MickRoberts

    They called for Rent Holiday in March 2020 & look how many are being made homeless now.


    So a UK citizen car hire Rental firm, plant rental, property Landlord can’t have his property back when he wants?They hire the car out & the person says I’m not giving it u back & the Court says the hire firm can’t have it back either, do you really think there will be any more car hire firms left? Or will the hire firm rent it out to anyone that has a License or be really picky who they hire cars out to?And this is why Shelter & Generation rent, u will be getting many more evictions next few years. As Landlords are panicking, they can’t even have their house back when they want. They din’t sign up to this. They/We housed people, many of them homeless, me/myself am biggest Benefit Landlord in Nottingham & I’ve housed more Benefit homeless in Nottingham over 25 years than anyone. And guess what, I’m not doing it any more cause of your actions. I am refusing to take Benefit tenants any more, please take me to court, let’s get it out in the open.If u stop someone having their own property back, then the providers of that property will stop providing. I too disagree when it’s someone’s home for 20 years. But let’s not forget, the Landlord is human too. He gets older. When can he retire? If u made things easy, tenant could easily move to an affordable house up the road. But that Landlord is selling too & in’t taking risky tenants any more either.If u made it easy, I could sell to another Landlord with tenant in. He/She won’t buy either cause of your actions.Shelter & Generation Rent, u r making it so, that tenants have nowhere to live, having the opposite effect of what u & us Landlords want.

  3. jeremy1960

    Usual bunch of lefties who cannot see beyond their own front gates and fail to understand that it’s crazy ideas like this that have caused the situation we are now in!

  4. Mark Connelly

    Quite extraordinary. Given they have the data from Scotland which clearly shows this move was an unmitigated disaster there. Scotlands landlords have fled the sector in droves in the past few months.  And yet these clowns for purely political reasons  with no evidence it will help tenants in any way. Wish to push forward with their virtue signalling 6th form politics that can only hurt the very people they profess to care about.

    1. MickRoberts

      That’s exactly it, they have the data from Scotland.
      Shelter used to say the changes are working in Scotland, now when I ask them You supported it in Scotland & look at the homeless it’s causing up there, Shelter now stay silent.

  5. jan-byers

    This is nothing wait until Labour get in !

    1. AcornsRNuts

      Not waiting. Selling one now, the other in 2024.

  6. Will2

    So we have left wing tyrants who increase council tax by 10% and then want to restrict other because we are landlords.  These people are two faced cretins that need removing from power. A power they abuse.


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