Tories pledge to ‘re-balance’ housing market towards home ownership – and Labour to fine bad landlords £100,000

The Tories will help people buy and rent with the market ‘re-balanced’ towards home ownership, the Conservative manifesto declared yesterday. Meanwhile Labour is today set to unveil detailed new policies on the private rented sector.

The Tory policies – all widely leaked beforehand – contained no surprises but confirmed that if re-elected, the Conservatives will abolish ‘no fault’ evictions – a process already under way.

The manifesto, which devotes comparatively little space to housing, says: “This will create a fairer rental market: if you’re a tenant you will be protected from revenge evictions and rogue landlords, and if you’re one of the many good landlords, we will strengthen your rights of possession.”

It goes into no details as to how these would be beefed up. There is also no mention in the manifesto of reversing recent ‘landlord bashing’ moves, such as tax changes.

A new Tory government would also require only “one lifetime deposit” from tenants.

The manifesto will have major implications for the burgeoning deposit replacement market and also for how disputes are resolved at the end of tenancies.

The manifesto does not mention whether there could be a possible ‘topping up’ of lifetime deposits if the tenant’s first rental home was, for example, a studio but if the tenant progressively moved to larger and more expensive rental homes.

The manifesto also promises to encourage a new market in long-term fixed rate mortgages, which “will slash the cost of deposits, opening up a secure path to home ownership for first-time buyers in all parts of the United Kingdom”.

New homes developers will be used via the planning process to discount homes “in perpetuity” for a third of local people who cannot afford to buy in their areas.

The manifesto says that this could be used to prioritise key workers such as police, nurses and teachers.

Right to Buy will be maintained for all council tenants, while it will be “voluntary” for housing associations, with new pilot areas testing out the scheme.

Shared ownership will be reformed, and there will also be reforms to leasehold – all flagged up under the previous Tory administration. The Tories would also bring forward a Stamp Duty surcharge on foreign buyers, again already flagged up. There does not appear to be any other mention of Stamp Duty.

A new Conservative government would deliver at least a million more homes “of all tenures” over its lifetime, and they would be “beautiful, high-quality” properties.

The Green Belt would be protected and self-build encouraged.

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Labour meanwhile is today due to announce the detail on new policies which will “put bad landlords out of business”.

Jeremy Corbyn and housing spokesman John Healey will announce that all landlords must complete an annual property inspection, with all rental homes compulsorily meeting a decent standard.

It will be illegal to let homes without a rental inspection being completed and passed.  Fines of up to £100,000 will be levied for a single offence, with landlords having to repay rent.

Labour would also cap rents in line with inflation.

Corbyn says: “Labour will be on the side of tenants and take on dodgy landlords who have been given free rein for too long.”

Healey says Labour would legislate in its first year.

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6 Comments

  1. Will2

    Same old same old.

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    1. flockfollower102

      Sorry Will2, you just beat me!

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  2. flockfollower102

    Interesting that this article, which discusses what our political  leaders are proposing for the industry, at 7:50 has no comments, but an OTM article has eleven. I appreciate much of what we read has been threatened before and successive governments have done little to improve the housing industry for any parties, (except perhaps the large builders with the help to buy scheme!)

    As an industry we need to be come more politically savvy and put pressure on these people to make sensible changes. There is little in any of their proposals that  I am majorly concerned about, my big issue is the very fact that some of these proposals are even out there would suggest that our political elite have little understanding of the industry!

    1. Price of homes is purely dictated by supply and demand. Political fiddling in the process of house purchase normally brings unintended consequences!

    2. Lifetime deposits will be unwieldy and untrusted. As an example, how much money is currently being held in custodial deposit schemes that is unclaimed? How will lifetime deposits effect this figure?

    If we continue to complain about our politicians, we need to do something about them! Vote and educate our local MP.

     

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    1. Will2

      I am amazed you are not worried about the various proposals. It would be difficult to educate politicians. They are brain washed by their political parties like cults. Mind you I do not subscribe to the term property industry. I started life in the property profession not a “property trade”.  Personally I am deeply disturbed that AST’s are being abolished and all tenancies will be assured tenancies granting security of tenure to tenants and “the industry” seems ready to accept it.  It was not what I bought into. I suspect most trades people do not understand the true implication of what appears a subtle change but has potentially massive impacts. Perhaps a reason the term property industry has become an accepted term.

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  3. Woodentop

    It will be illegal to let homes without a rental inspection being completed and passed.  Fines of up to £100,000 will be levied for a single offence, with landlords having to repay rent.

     

    That would have some serious consequences for SHS, but no doubt they will be excluded as they are in many situations today.

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  4. Will2

    I think it is clear Labour DO NOT WANT A PRS.  State ownership of all rental accommodation is the solution as it pretty much used to be under the Rent Act.  Then tenants would really understand what choice means – NONE and what shortages really are!  The culture of landlord bashing started by politicians and perpetuated by the media has now made the word ROGUE be attached to EVERY landlord.  A previous contributor suggested policians need education on property matters – I think some of the tenant groups should make a close study of the property market between the early 1970’s and through the early eighties to understand what it was like without the PRS.  The real problems have been caused by Government selling off Council Housing add the pressure on no house building and you have a shortage of supply plus a rapidly expanding population. Whenever there is a shortage the criminals always jump in to fulfill the demand caused by shortages. The clowns in Government should perhaps compare the satisfaction rates between the Social Housing Sector and PRS and they will find; in general terms the PRS has a generally better satisfaction rate – but that does not provide the sensationalism that politicians and the media feast on.

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