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Mayor plans rent controls for London’s private housing sector

Posted on Monday, February 11, 2019

London Mayor Sadiq Khan could introduce rent controls to the capital, after a YouGov poll found that two thirds of Londoners are in favour of capping the amount that landlords charge in rent. 

According to the Mayor, “London is in the middle of a desperate housing crisis that has been generations in the making. At City Hall we are doing everything in our power to tackle it, including building record numbers of new social homes, but I have long been frustrated by my lack of powers to help private renters. The arguments for rent control are overwhelming, and Londoners overwhelmingly want it to happen.” 

Mr Khan highlighted that average private rents in London rose by 38% in the decade up to 2016, at a time when far more Londoners are also now renting. The average cost of renting a one-bedroom home in the capital is now higher than for a three-bedroom home anywhere else in England. 

The mayor is to seek the government’s support for the move, as he currentlylacks the powers to implement rent controls. He has asked Labour MP Karen Buck and London’s Deputy Mayor for Housing, James Murray for proposals that would make renting more affordable, while maintaining the supply and investment in the private rented sector.  

Many cities in Europe and North America impose limits on private rents, such as in some New York apartments where rents are capped. Scotland recently allowed councils to apply to introduce rent pressure zones, where rent rises cannot exceed inflation. 

The mayor also wants to see an end to no fault evictions and a right to open ended tenancies, balanced by steps to help landlords regain possession of their homes, when they have a legitimate reason. 

Read more about this story on The Property Wire website.

Image courtesy of richardharriscoaching.com