What's in the Renters' Reform Bill?

News at Waterfords | 07/11/2022

What do prospective and existing property investors and landlords need to be aware of with the long-awaited Renters’ Reform Bill?

For a huge number of property investors in the UK, private rental sector performance is a key consideration, with many opting to rent their properties out to tenants to maximise returns over the long run.

There are numerous rules and regulations to keep up with in the buy-to-let sector, with various changes both planned and upcoming for landlords and investors to know about. One major legislative change that has been in the background since 2019 is the Renters’ Reform Bill.

It is a radical plan that sets out some big changes in the lettings industry, along with new rights for tenants. While many of the proposed adjustments are viewed as positive for the sector, in terms of raising standards, others are less popular among those who feel that landlords are being targeted at a time when they are more essential than ever in providing homes for millions of people.


What’s in the Renters’ Reform Bill?

Back in October, the government confirmed that the Renters’ Reform Bill would be introduced during the current parliamentary session.

However, what will ultimately form the final legislation remains uncertain, with ousted Prime Minister Liz Truss allegedly suggesting that one of the biggest parts of the Bill, the abolishment of Section 21 eviction powers, would not go ahead.


  • Section 21 (no fault) evictions: At present, landlords can evict a tenant at the end of a fixed term tenancy, or during a rolling periodic tenancy, without giving a reason. This move has come under criticism from some landlord bodies and industry members, as it could make it harder for landlords to remove tenants. The idea is that there will be a reformed set of grounds for possession, which could protect landlords in circumstances such as rent arrears, or wishing to sell the property or move back in.
  • Periodic tenancies: These could replace Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreements, which is currently the most common form of tenancy. The government’s white paper states this will mean that “both parties will better understand their rights and responsibilities”, while providing “greater security for tenants, while retaining the important flexibility that privately rented accommodation offers.” It adds: “This will enable tenants to leave poor quality properties without remaining liable for the rent or to move more easily when their circumstances change, for example to take up a new job opportunity.”
  • Rent review clauses: These will be abolished under the Renters’ Reform Bill, meaning landlords will only be able to put their rents up once per year. They will also have to give two months’ notice of a rent increase. Realistically, the majority of landlords would not increase their rents more frequently than this anyway within a tenancy agreement, but it is a move to protect tenants from “unscrupulous landlords”.
  • Accepting pets and people on benefits: Under the Renters’ Reform Bill, landlords will no longer be able to apply “blanket bans” to their listings that automatically reject certain types of tenants. This is to make it fairer for tenants who claim benefits or those with pets, and reduce discrimination in the sector.


While the current political landscape is uncertain, meaning a date for the Renters’ Reform Bill being introduced is yet to transpire – and which could also see certain parts of the bill tweaked or even scrapped – it is important for landlords to be aware of the potential changes in the industry.

It is hoped that improving standards and fairness across the private rented sector will make it a more appealing situation for tenants, while clearing the way for responsible, law-abiding landlords and property investors to flourish.


Keep up to date with legislation changes with Waterfords

With legislation constantly changing in the lettings industry, it can be a bit of a headache to keep on top of everything and ensure you are being compliant. Waterfords Lettings & Property Management team are proud to offer something for every landlord in terms of property management packages.

Get in touch with our friendly team today to discuss how we can help take the stress out of being a landlord.

Hampshire Lettings: 01252 623330

Surrey Lettings: 01276 903006

Email us at lettings@waterfords.co.uk