Homes Act 2018 Central Housing Group

Failing courts need urgent reform

New statistics out today show that it now takes private landlords an average of 22.5 weeks from making a claim to the courts for a property to be repossessed to it actually happening – up from 21.6 weeks since the beginning of the year.

The RLA has been campaigning for court reform for some time, and says the figures prove the existing system is unable to cope with demand.

David Smith, Policy Director for The RLA said: “Today’s figures show that the courts are unable to cope when landlords seek to repossess properties for legitimate reasons.

“With proposals to scrap Section 21 repossessions set to lead to a significant increase in cases brought to the courts, it is now a matter of urgency that the Government brings forward its plans for court reform.

“This requires a fully funded, properly staffed, dedicated housing court that can bring rapid justice for landlords and tenants.

“Tinkering with the existing system will not be good enough.”

According to research by the RLA on plans to scrap Section 21 79% of private landlords with experience of using the courts to repossess properties are dissatisfied with the way they work.

According to one of the largest ever surveys of landlords and letting agents, 91 per cent of landlords would support the establishment of a dedicated housing court to deal with housing cases

The RLA has now written to the new Justice Secretary, Robert Buckland MP, warning that if Ministers go ahead with plans to scrap Section 21 ‘no explanation’ repossessions, the courts will be simply unable to cope with the increased pressure.

Written by Sally Walmsley

Blog Post from Residential Landlords Association

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