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27 March, 2020 Open access

Master of the Rolls and Lord Chancellor issue new Practice Direction on staying possession proceedings in response to coronavirus outbreak

Practice Direction confirms that all proceedings for possession, and proceedings seeking to enforce an order for possession by a warrant or writ of possession, are stayed for a period of 90 days from today

27 March, 2020 Open access

HMCTS to suspend all ongoing housing possession action for initial period of 90 days from today

Government also confirms that it is working with the Master of Rolls to strengthen the pre-action protocol requirement and extend this to the private rented sector

26 March, 2020 Open access

Coronavirus Act sets minimum three month notice period for eviction for statutory tenants in the private and social rented sectors

However, new law does not prevent landlords from serving a notice of intention to possess, nor does it end a tenant's liability for rental payments

25 March, 2020 Open access

Commons Select Committee warns that protection from eviction measures in Coronavirus Bill do nothing to protect those already subject to eviction processes

Chair of Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee says government must quickly come up with stronger proposals to protect all renters from eviction during the COVID-19 crisis

25 March, 2020 Open access

Scottish Government confirms that it will introduce emergency legislation to ensure that there are no evictions as a result of COVID-19 for six months

Minister also tells Scottish Parliament that notice period will be extended to six months for 'majority' of grounds for eviction

25 March, 2020

Approval and designation of client money protection schemes for property agents in England

New regulations extend grace period under which private sector letting agents are not required to be a member of a scheme to 1 April 2021

20 March, 2020

Vagrancy (Repeal) Bill 2019-21 receives first reading in House of Commons

Private Members' Bill seeks to repeal Vagrancy Act 1824 which makes it a crime in England and Wales to beg or to be street homeless

19 March, 2020 Open access

Government announces ‘radical package’ of measures to protect renters and landlords affected by coronavirus

No renter who has lost income due to coronavirus will be forced out of their home, nor will any landlord face unmanageable debts

19 March, 2020

Institute for Fiscal Studies calls for ‘out of date’ council tax to be revalued and reformed

New report says a more progressive system could be achieved with updated property valuations, bills that are more proportional to value, and reform or abolition of the single person discount

19 March, 2020

Scottish Housing and Property Chamber postpones scheduled hearings and case management discussions

Measures in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will initially be in place until 28 May 2020

19 March, 2020

Number of households owed main homelessness duty in England increases by more than a third

However, new official statistics highlight that number owed main duty is down by more than a quarter compared to period immediately preceding commencement of the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017

18 March, 2020

Far more older people are likely to be living in rented accommodation in the future

ONS suggests that this could impact on their finances, housing quality, health, and accessibility and adaptability of the property

18 March, 2020 Open access

NHF says housing association tenants should be reassured they will not be evicted as a result of the coronavirus pandemic

Chief Executive also urges government to do more to strengthen the welfare system, to ensure that everyone who needs it can quickly get help if their income drops

17 March, 2020 Open access

Communities Secretary announces £3.2 million emergency funding to help rough sleepers to self-isolate

Funding will reimburse councils for the cost of providing accommodation and services to those that need to self-isolate during the COVID-19 outbreak

17 March, 2020

12 March, 2020

Two thirds of those presenting as homeless in Northern Ireland granted Full Duty Applicant status and accepted as statutorily homeless

Main reasons for being accepted as homeless are that accommodation is not reasonable, breakdown of sharing or family arrangements, or loss of rented accommodation

11 March, 2020

Government announces new funding to tackle rough sleeping, and to remove unsafe cladding from residential buildings

Budget 2020 also confirms additional exemptions from the shared accommodation rate to protect benefit claimants at risk of homelessness

11 March, 2020

Intention and ambition of Homelessness Reduction Act is being constrained by housing market, welfare system and funding

New report from Crisis recommends raising LHA rates to 30th percentile and placing a duty to prevent homelessness on all relevant public bodies

11 March, 2020

Freeholders and developers of leasehold properties that refuse to reduce ‘onerous and escalating’ ground rents should be forced to do so

Committee Chair calls for new power to be introduced under the Renters’ Reform Bill announced in the Queen’s Speech