The government says that rental deposits being charged to tenants should be capped at five weeks’ of rent.
The Housing, Communities and Local Government committee has been struggling to find an acceptable level for deposits that are demanded from tenants in England.
They had unveiled plans for a deposit cap of six weeks but, according to one national newspaper, this will be reduced to five weeks.
The National Landlords’ Association (NLA) says that having a low cap would mean landlords are less willing to allow tenants to have pets since they will not have the ability to fix a higher deposit to help cover for repairs.
The move is seen as a compromise since the government had preferred a four-week cap as the deposit.
Legislation will prevent landlords from chucking tenants out of their homes
The national newspaper, which claims to have seen a draft report, also says the committee is aiming to introduce legislation that will prevent landlords from chucking tenants out of their homes without explanation.
They say this will help ensure that tenants cannot be evicted for asking for property repairs.
In response, the Residential Landlords’ Association (RLA) says that the plan to cap deposits at five weeks will be ‘playing into the hands of rent cheats’.
The RLA says the proposal to prevent revenge evictions ignores the issue that this is already illegal under the Deregulation Act 2015.
The RLA also says it has carried out research that found 40% of landlords have dealt with tenants who do not pay their final month’s rent and they believe that a lower cap would make it easier for tenants to cheat the landlord out of the rent they owe.
Alan Ward, chairman of the RLA, said: “We need to address the issue of those tenants who fail to pay their rent with as much energy as we do in tackling rogue landlords.
“The proposal to lower the rental deposit cap will place in the hands of a minority of tenants who cheat those who are providing homes out of their rent that is legitimately owed.”
Landlords in Northern Ireland get new guides
Meanwhile, for landlords with a buy to let property in Northern Ireland, the Tenancy Deposit Scheme has published a new range of landlord guides and templates that may help them run their business more effectively.
The information will also help inform those thinking of investing in a buy to let property.
The information covers various issues including improving property standards and the deposit regulation rules for the private rental sector.
The TDS' Northern Ireland operations manager, Eamonn Hunt, said: “These guides are meeting demand for specific guidance from the private rental sector.”