Calls for longer tenancies to provide families with more security, concerns about rapidly rising rents and the need for licensing schemes were amongst the topics that arose in the recent parliamentary debate on housing (15 May 2018).

Leases of three or five years were suggested along with tax or capital gains incentives for longer tenancies. James Brokenshire MP, current Housing Secretary, stated that the Government will consult on options to support landlords to offer longer tenancies to those who want them. Countering this, Mhairi Black, SNP MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire, said action is needed, not more consultations. She referred to the 15 ongoing consultations related to the private rented sector.

John Healey MP, Shadow Housing Secretary, raised concerns about PRS tenants facing rent which are “soaring way ahead of incomes”. He spoke of Labour’s policies for the PRS which include: legal minimum standards, longer tenancies, a cap on rent increases and local licensing. Mark Prisk Tory MP for Hertford and Stortford and former Housing Minister, set out his opposition to rent capping.

Emma Hardy, Labour MP for Kingston upon Hull West and Hessle suggested the Government should make it easier for councils to introduce landlord licensing schemes so that checks can be made that tenants are not living in conditions hazardous to health. This was backed by Russell-Moyle Labour MP for Brighton Kemptown, who also noted that the Minister has not signed off on a number of selective licensing applications.

Read more about the Housing Debate in May 2018 here