On 16th June 2022 the Government published its White Paper entitled “A Fairer Private Rented Sector”, setting out its proposals for the Renters Reform Act.  Describing itself as “a new deal for private renters”, the White Paper includes proposals for:

  • banning section 21 ‘no-fault’ evictions for assured shorthold tenants
  • extending a Decent Homes Standard to the private sector
  • introducing an across-the-board redress system.

These proposals, particularly affecting the tenancy status of students have significant implications for the entire student housing market.

  • Whilst PBSA (whether University or private sector) will be treated differently from off-street housing the Government proposes that “students renting in the general private rental market will be included within the reforms, maintaining consistency across the PRS.”
  • Students typically rent for a fixed term which more or less coincides with the academic year.  It is proposed to replace assured and assured shorthold tenancies with a single regime of periodic tenancies, which tenants will be able to end on 2 months’ notice. 
  • Repossessions will have to be fault-based, which could mean that more students continue in occupation after the end of their course.
  • Disruption of the traditional student letting cycle is likely to make planning and budgeting extremely challenging.

This event was held via Zoom on Wednesday 6th July and featured contributions from:

  • Hilary Crook of Hatch Legal 
  • Martin Blakey, speaking on behalf of Unipol and the ANUK/Unipol National Codes