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Landlord pressure groups campaigning for changes in the law to fast track evictions for difficult tenants are calling for support in a petition.
Mike Weatherley, Tory MP for Hove and Portslade is leading the protesters, consisting of 14 landlord businesses and representative groups, including the Residential Landlords Association (RLA).
They want the government to reconsider closing more than 50 county courts because they say the current network cannot cope with eviction cases, and reducing the number of courts will only make matters worse for landlords.
The RLA says more than 2,000 supporters have signed the petition – available online.
The petition calls for:
“The system should be simple and quick for clear-cut cases,” said the Residential Landlords Association web site.
“When there is a clear case of a tenant who refuses to pay rent and/or has anti-social behaviour issues that cannot be resolved, they must be evicted. Under the current system this can take up to 6 months, which is too long and as a result, landlords with mortgages are losing properties and decent tenants are being kept out.
“It is already much faster to evict squatters and landlords need something like this procedure for clear-cut.”
The RLA adds that six out of every 10 helpline calls from landlords relate to problems with taking possession of property.
If the case goes to a county court, a court hearing date should be listed within six weeks of application – but many are too busy to comply and the RLA fears that closing courts will only add more delays to the process.
“If the current system that takes too long remains, courts will be overwhelmed and landlords will lose out even more. Local housing authorities, who are trying to house more people with private landlords, will find that more difficult too,” said the RLA.
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