Shelter offers up a General Election manifesto – with more regulation for private landlords

Shelter offers up a General Election manifesto – with more regulation for private landlords

10:28 AM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago 28

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Shelter has launched its manifesto for the next General Election, calling on all political parties to commit to a four-point plan to rebuild the country’s ‘broken housing system’.

The homelessness charity says this action must include clamping down on criminal landlords and more regulation of private sector landlords.

The manifesto, entitled ‘The Way Home: a manifesto to rebuild our broken housing system’, outlines the action needed to end the housing emergency and has been created with the help of 75 people with a ‘lived experience of the housing emergency’.

The manifesto demands that the next government:

  • Build 90,000 social homes a year for the next 10 years
  • Make private renting affordable and secure
  • Improve the quality and safety of rented homes
  • Strengthen and clarify housing rights.

‘Tackle the housing emergency head-on’

Shelter’s chief executive, Polly Neate, writing for Inside Housing, said: “No party can consider itself ready to lead the country unless it is willing to tackle the housing emergency head-on.

“This means taking bold action to rebuild our housing system on the generational principle it was designed on: to provide the homes our country needs.”

She added: “With private rents continuing to rise while wages stagnate, we must have a plan to prevent people from being trapped in a cycle of financial hardship.

“We need to make private renting affordable.

“This means regulating how much landlords can hike rents within a tenancy each year, to protect people from the stress and instability of huge rent increases.”

‘Private rental sector has more than doubled’

Ms Neate says: “The chronic shortage of social homes has meant the size of the private rental sector has more than doubled in the past 20 years.

“And a lack of effective regulation means that private renters are navigating the highest recorded levels of rent, poor conditions and the threat of an unfair eviction.”

She adds: “People are trapped in poor-quality homes that they can barely afford, unable to save and having to cut back on essentials to pay their bills.”

Private renting is ‘too expensive and insecure’

According to Shelter, its frontline services hear from people every day in ‘desperate and terrifying situation’ because there aren’t enough affordable homes and private renting is ‘too expensive and insecure’.

The charity says that for decades, successive governments have failed to build enough social homes.

As a result, 1.2 million households are currently stuck on social housing waiting lists, and there are 130,000 homeless children are staying in temporary accommodation – the highest ever recorded.

Ms Neate says that a new generation of social homes to rent is the only sustainable solution and it is the only housing tenure that’s affordable because rents are tied to local incomes.

To improve the quality and safety of rented homes, Shelter is calling for better management, robust regulation and proper enforcement standards for both social and private rented sectors.

It also says that local authorities need stronger powers to hold criminal landlords to account.

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11:38 AM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

Shelter have never housed a single person.

Shelter need to understand how the Private Rental Sector works.

Increasing costs, increasing regulation, increasing risk equals increasing rents.

Most rents are less than 6% per year of a property’s value. Landlords are not making a fortune. They could invest elsewhere. They could switch to holiday letting.

If Shelter had bought houses with all the money that they’ve had, they’d be helping thousands of families.

Polly Neate ‘earns’ a six figure salary as CEO of Shelter.

Marlena Topple

12:19 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

I am no fan of Shelter but she is right that there is a housing shortage and rents are unaffordable. However she fails to show any understanding of the factors that have lead to a shortage of rental accommodation and higher rents and certainly no accountability. We all know this is because of regressive and poorly thought through government policy underpinned by the anti landlord sentiment fueled by Shelter, Generation Rent and their ilk.


12:27 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Marlena Topple at 22/09/2023 - 12:19
The housing shortage is primarily caused by a failure to plan for uncontrolled immigration.

Churchills Tax Advisers

12:31 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

Shelter can put forward whatever initiatives it wants, provided it realises that if the Government isn't willing to pay for them then the costs will be ultimately borne by tenants

dismayed landlord

13:37 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

Polly and the ignorant supporter ivmcluding the muppets in government can say and postulate their policies as much as they want. But if there is no PRS left and LA/ social housing just not there than it’s hot air. However she gets a salary for it so let her carry on . Happy days.

Martin O'Hearne

13:46 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

Shelter (and others) have overplayed their hand and it’s very satisfying to see them losing their heads. There is now strong rumour that the RR Bill is going in the bin so will never be implemented, and even if Labour become the next Government, they won’t implement any major changes to the PRS because by then, the damage that has so far been done, will be much much worse, resulting in an even bigger housing crisis.
I’d call that check-mate!

Tim Tanner

14:08 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

There are some sensible ideas in here but why does she always shoot herself in the foot?
“With private rents continuing to rise while wages stagnate". Really?

"Annual growth in employees' average total pay (including bonuses) was 8.2% in April to June 2023. This is the largest annual growth rate seen outside the coronavirus pandemic period." Source: ONS.


14:16 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Tim Tanner at 22/09/2023 - 14:08Exactly right.
Meanwhile, private sector rents rose by 5.1% in the year to June 2023*.
Lower than wage inflation. Lower than inflation.
Landlords’ costs probably rose by more than inflation.
* Source: ONS

Mick Roberts

16:55 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

When u stop a Landlord charging what he likes or can get, u then the tenant has no house in the first place.


20:51 PM, 22nd September 2023, About 2 months ago

Why doesn't Polly Neate use her married name Thornbery, perhaps thats too politically correct for her ?
Anyway with all the demands she is making I am thinking of offering my tenants the shirt off my back as well, wonder what colour they would like.

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