Lifetime deposits, abolition of S21 and new possession rights for landlords

Lifetime deposits, abolition of S21 and new possession rights for landlords

15:17 PM, 19th December 2019, About 3 years ago 23

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Government Press release:

A revolutionary new deal for renters will restore fairness, honesty and transparency to the heart of the housing market, thanks to new proposals unveiled as part of the Queen’s Speech.

Under the plans, millions of renters will benefit from a new lifetime deposit scheme, which will see their hard-earned deposit move with them from property to property – giving tenants more control over their lives and keeping more of their cash in their pocket.

Proposals to abolish no-fault evictions have also been confirmed, meaning landlords will no longer be able to uproot tenants from their homes at short notice and with no good reason – bringing greater security to millions of families who live in rented accommodation.

This will be matched with new powers to strengthen the rights of landlords to gain possession of their property through the courts when they have a clearly valid reason to do so, in order to create a fair market where good and responsible landlords flourish.

The government has also announced plans which will make owning a home more affordable. This includes the new First Home scheme making homes available at a discount for local first-time buyers.

Councils will be able to use housing developers’ contributions to discount homes by 30% for people who cannot otherwise afford to buy in their area. The Affordable Homes Programme will also be renewed, building more homes for rent and delivering a new shared ownership offer.

The Queen’s Speech has also set out further detail for new legislation to bring an end to the unscrupulous practice of unnecessary leaseholds – introducing new laws to ban new houses being sold on a leasehold basis and reducing ground rents for new leases to zero.

Welcoming the Speech, Housing Secretary Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP said:

“The announcements made in the Queen’s Speech today will empower both home-buyers and renters. The legislation that we will bring forward will provide a better deal for renters through our lifetime deposit scheme while also protecting them from no fault evictions. We will also help first-time buyers get a foot on the property market with 30% discounts for local people and key workers.”

“We are moving forward with legislation to set ground rents to zero, abolish leasehold houses and prioritise the safety of residents with the biggest change to building safety laws for 40 years. I look forward to getting on with this ambitious and exciting agenda.”


As well as the measures for renters, local first-time buyers and reforms to the leasehold market, the government has also outlined plans to which will ensure any new housing is accompanied by essential infrastructure. A white paper will also be published on reforming the planning system to ensure it works better for the public and small builders.


Rob Crawford

15:04 PM, 20th December 2019, About 3 years ago

On the subject of lifetime deposits I think there is a fairly simple means to apply this. A Government approved deposit scheme company, would hold the five weeks deposit provided by the tenant. That company would be backed by an insurance scheme who will ensure that the max 5 week deposit amount is always available to the landlord as may be required. The Deposit company would provide an arbitration service and manage access to the deposit pool. They would also be responsible for maintaining the deposit to the 5 week rent amount. The insurance scheme kicks in for instance where the tenant is slow at refunding the deposit pool after a pay out to the former landlord. The Deposit company or insurance company would be responsible for chasing the tenant if need be. I am currently using the "Blinc No Deposit Scheme" that can provide access to an amount that is more than the legislated 5 weeks deposit. My last three tenants have opted to use this scheme and pay a one off fee equal to one weeks rent and then for consecutive years, £30 per annum. If a claim is made, the scheme funds the claim and they chase the tenant to get reimbursed.

Paul Essex View Profile

15:15 PM, 20th December 2019, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Rob Crawford at 20/12/2019 - 15:04
I am not sure about the legality of these schemes surely all such charges on top of the rent are now disallowed. Almost certainly you could not insist on future tenants taking out such insurance.

paul robinson

15:21 PM, 20th December 2019, About 3 years ago

Interesting info - thanks.

Shared rentals that I’m involved in have fairly low deposits per tenant, but as a joint tenancy the deposit is registered as 1 deposit.

Feel a government scheme is going to over complicate this process - or how would that work for a joint tenancy?

I once used the government free deposit protection scheme and was amazed how poor the service and speed was to get deposit back to tenants.

I now always use MY Deposits Insurance back scheme, reducing my admin and allowing to get deposit back to each tenant, usually less than 5 days.

From experience (tenant fee ban) these new government schemes often don’t work in practice for every type of tenancy and decent tenants and landlords are just affected negatively, rather than as intended.

Tenants and Landlords should have a choice on what scheme is used, allowing the fairest and most cost effective approach to suit all parties.

More and more unnecessary changes ultimately just drives up rent and along side scrapping S21 is going to result in decent landlords selling up.


16:30 PM, 20th December 2019, About 3 years ago

Any mention of when it's happening.

Rob Crawford

17:18 PM, 20th December 2019, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Paul Essex at 20/12/2019 - 15:15The no deposit schemes are perfectly legal. The landlord provides acceptance that they are happy for the tenant to use the scheme. It must be presented as an alternative to normal deposit scheme though. The tenant decides. Similar to a tenant's contents insurance that must also be optional.

The Forever Tenant

20:02 PM, 20th December 2019, About 3 years ago

As a decent tangent, I will be staying far away from the Zero deposit schemes.

So far in 20 years of renting I've not lost a single penny from any of my deposits. So having a service that would cost me extra is not appealling at all.

My other concern for the zero deposit companies is their financial stability, but as long as they only have to pay out on 1 in 5 deposits, they should be fine.

Chris Cottage

11:10 AM, 21st December 2019, About 3 years ago

What does the bit mean about “Councils will be able to use housing developers’ contributions to discount homes by 30%” ?

Paul Goulder

11:54 AM, 21st December 2019, About 3 years ago

We don’t do a final inspection until they leave ,some tenants leave early to secure the new dwelling .when the deposit has money taken off for damage .who would want the tenant


13:16 PM, 21st December 2019, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by The Forever Tenant at 20/12/2019 - 20:02
Hi Forever Tenant, what makes you think that Tenants will have to pay the insurance premium? The way this government is going it will be classed as a fee which Landlords will have to pay.

Michael Barnes

19:14 PM, 21st December 2019, About 3 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Rod at 20/12/2019 - 16:30"Any mention of when it's happening."
It will follow the standard route through parliament.
When the Bill is published I recommend that all landlords read it, understand it, and explain to their MPs where it is going to be detrimental to decent tenants and landlords.
Then follow its progress and explain to MPs the detrimental effects of amendments.
Then when it goes to the Lords, identify some members with an interest in the area and explain to them the detrimental effects.
And explain to them that there are segments of the market that have different attributes, such as student lets and HMOs let by the room, and what different requirements they have.

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