Shamplina: Rising Evictions Are Driven By Landlords Exiting, Not Rent Arrears

Leading evictions expert Paul Shamplina (main pic) has called out Generation Rent’s claim that private renters are “under stress like never before” as eviction activity rises within the private rented sector.

The comments have been made by its Deputy Director Dan Wilson Craw (pictured), who said the most recent eviction statistics from the Ministry of Justice suggest renters who are struggling face landlords using Section 21 evictions to remove them from properties.

The MoJ statistics show that no-fault evictions are at their highest since 2017 and that evictions for rent arrears are at their highest on record.

“Private renters are under stress like never before. The rising cost of living has pushed thousands into rent arrears, who now face homelessness as their landlords seek eviction,” says Craw.

“Even staying on top of rent is not enough for other renters, whose landlords are using Section 21 eviction notices to force them out without needing a reason. These properties will often end up back on the market at a much higher rent.”

Covid delays But Shamplina says the figures do not reflect the cost-of-living crisis but rather the huge bottleneck of Covid-era eviction activity finally passing through an already-creaking courts system.

“Despite the data showing that evictions and Section 21 notices have surged recently, they continue to be at very low levels compared to the millions of households within the private rented sector – our figures suggest this year some 6,000 people will be evicted via Section 21 notices by private landlords,” he says.

“We also know that an unprecedented number of landlords are selling up; 26% of landlords that served a section 21 through landlord action during the past 12 months did so because they are exiting the market. “

Nevertheless, Craw has called on the Chancellor to take emergency steps during his Autumn statement on Thursday to stop tenants being evicted by their landlords and “stop rents from worsening the cost of living crisis”.

“We need Jeremy Hunt to freeze rents, suspend no-fault evictions, and re-link Local Housing Allowance rates to market rent,” he added.

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