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Regulation of private renting review – what can it tell us about upcoming PRS reform?

14th April 2022

Ahead of the upcoming Renters’ Reform Bill, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has called for more cohesive policymaking and consistency in tenant protections in the private rented sector.

Its Regulation of Private Renting report, published yesterday, urges more government support for local authorities with enforcing of PRS regulation, and for educating tenants on their rights.

The report shines a spotlight on areas that safeagent is monitoring closely on behalf of agents.

Reflecting on the committee’s findings, Isobel Thomson, safeagent’s chief executive, says:

“We hope that many of the issues highlighted by this review will be addressed by the highly anticipated Renters’ Reform Bill.

“Reform needs to be cohesive, and work as a complete package for everyone in the private rented sector. Turning theory into practice will be the biggest challenge, so the committee is right to focus on enforcement. 

“Agents have a vital role to play in helping to stamp out malpractice and, whatever the PRS reform package brings, will be there to support regulators with proper enforcement and monitoring. 

“That means agents, landlords, and tenants all need to be directly involved in shaping policy.

“We support reform, but lots can be done to enforce existing regulation, without needing to wait for more wholescale change. 

“Education is key and local authorities need support from central Government to ensure tenants fully understand their rights.  Agents already play a pivotal role in ensuring tenants are well-informed.

“We await with interest the Government’s reform bill and look forward to seeing how these recommendations are accounted for.

“Everyone in the PRS wants a system that works for all involved.  We will continue to work closely with our agents to help them understand and embrace whatever changes are coming.”

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