In a reshuffle to the country’s private rented sector, Scotland is to introduce stricter rent controls and ban, ‘no fault’ evictions.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon recently released the Scottish National Party’s latest programme for Government for the upcoming year.
The programme includes a Private Tenancies Bill, which has measures that promise to, ‘provide more predictable rents and protection for tenants against excessive rent increases, including the ability to introduce rent controls for rent pressure areas.’
In addition, the changes will see the removal of the, ‘no-fault ground for repossession, meaning a landlord can no longer ask a tenant to leave simply because the fixed-term has ended.’
However, the Scottish Property Federation says that rent controls could deter investment within Scotland’s private rented sector, alongside being detrimental to housing supply.
What’s more, the SPF is worried that rent controls could see future investment in the build to rent market wiped out. The organisation believes that build to rent has potential to substantially boost Scotland’s housing stock.
Scotland to bring in tighter rent controls
David Melhuish, director of the Scottish Property Federation commented, ‘we will consider the detail of the Bill carefully when it is published but we have been trying to encourage investment into Scotland’s purpose-built rental market for a long time, and it has been great to see momentum build over the past few months with some big deals taking place.’
‘A clear message we have had from the industry, however, is that the mere prospect of rent controls, could be enough to spook potential investors bring us back to square one again,’ Melhuish continued.
Concluding, Mr Melhuish said, ‘f the Scottish Government wants to increase housing supply, then the introduction of rent controls is not the way to do it. The purpose-built private rented sector has the potential to deliver a large amount of new homes across Scotland, and we should be doing everything we can to encourage investment in this sector rather than regulate this sector before it has had chance to take root.’