Introduce a UK wide private property rental cap
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The proposal, there needs to be a discussion by the government in regards to introducing a UK wide cap on private residential rental properties up to 25% above the council rates.
In recent times we have seen household rental prices increase in the private rental sector, while wages stay stagnant. With private rental prices at up to 5 times higher than the local council equivalent, this issue needs addressing urgently!
For example, the average rental cost for a three bedroom house in Stevenage is £108.12 a week with the council, compared to the private rental sector of £230 a week*. I am sure this is a very similar story across the UK.
People are being pushed into poverty to provide housing for their families, while landlords lay back and watch their bank balances increase. Also, many landlords will happily put up rent as well if essential repairs or maintenance are needed, so they do not have the burden of the costs involved, the tenants then foot the bill.
Something needs to be done to prevent landlords exploiting the housing market to get rich, while those on low incomes suffer. With changes to housing benefit caps, some people can not even afford the rent put in place by private landlords, with a lot of people ending up in arrears.
By introducing a possible cap on Private rents, this would make living costs slightly lower for the average working person and their families where budgets already stretched beyond belief! There is also a potential where housing benefit costs could see a reduction as the government would potentially need to provide less funding to cover housing costs. It's already been shown to save around £1.4 billion* by reducing the council rents by 1% over four years.
By capping rents you would also reduce the costs of the massively overpriced deposits needed to even get a rental property!
* Source: Hertfordshire Mercury, Feb 2nd, 2016. (http://www.hertfordshiremercury.co.uk/stevenage-council-tenants-1-cent-cut-rent/story-28654513-detail/story.html This article discusses the rent decrease, and a quote from Councillor Ann Webb on January 28th, 2016.
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