A leading thinktank is proposing that tenants of private landlords should have a new rights that will guarantee rents not increasing by more than inflation.
The idea comes from Civitas who are also saying that tenants should be allowed to live in their home for as long as they want to.
The thinktank says a new regime of regulations are needed to govern the private rental sector and to prevent landlords from exploiting tenants and taxpayers because there is a shortage of homes to rent.
Tenants deserve a ‘fair deal’
In a report written by David Bentley, he said it was important to ensure that private renters were 'offered a fair deal' because they had little choice other than private renting.
Civitas is now arguing that indefinite tenancies should be offered 'as the norm' and that any agreed rent should be index-linked to inflation to help give tenants the security they need.
The report also points out that most landlords buy existing homes rather than investing in new-build which adds to the competition for homes and which, in turn, pushes up prices and crowds out most first-time buyers from the market.
Mr Bentley says that landlords in future should be nudged towards investing in new-build rather buying existing owner occupied homes.
New regulations proposed for landlords
The proposed new regulations would not spell an exodus of private landlords since many, the report claims, have bought buy to let investments in order to 'capitalise on rising house prices'.
Civitas also says that the UK's private rental sector will account for more than a third of the country's housing stock within 16 years and that 40% of tenant’s incomes are taken up by rent.
They say there is an increasing lack of affordability and this is leading to an increasing housing benefit bill that is picked by taxpayers.
Growing numbers back 'rent controls'
Meanwhile, a poll has revealed that many Britons back the return of rent controls.
Organised by Generation Rent, a tenant's campaign group, the survey revealed that 59% of those surveyed would back rent controls being reintroduced.
Only 7% of people opposed such a move and 34% expressed no opinion.
Alex Hilton, a director of Generation Rent, said: “There's sympathy from an older generation for a younger generation which is condemned by high property prices to a life of rent slavery.
“Politicians will have an opportunity by supporting rent controls to do something that will benefit millions of people while saving the taxpayer money from its Housing Benefit bill.”
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