The Welsh Liberal Democrat Housing Spokesperson, Peter Black has expressed his concern at proposals in the Welsh Government’s Renting Homes Bill that will effectively abolish six month minimum housing tenancies and lead to an increased risk of eviction for private tenants.
Proposals in the Bill will end the six-month notice period landlords must give. With more than a million people now living in rented properties in Wales this could place many of their tenancies in jeopardy.
“I am astonished that the Welsh Government is pressing ahead with this change,” said Mr. Black. “This is especially so as the Labour Party in England are going the opposite way and are suggesting that they will introduce three year minimum tenancies.
“It is in the best interests of both landlords and tenants to have long term and reliable tenancies that give both stability in terms of home life and in the income that the landlord expects to receive from rent. The Welsh Government’s proposal works against that principle. It is the sort of reform that I would have expected from the Thatcher government.
“I am especially concerned about this proposal because recent Welsh legislation means that councils can now discharge their homeless duty by rehousing homeless persons in privately rented homes. Getting rid of the six month minimum tenancy will make that proposal unworkable especially given the level of support that homeless persons need to establish themselves in a new home.
“A far better way forward would have been to have introduced a one or two year minimum tenancy with a probationary period. That would offer landlords flexibility, whilst giving tenants some security. The Minister must think again.”