‘Light handed’ regulation could help improve private renting

A new report has claimed that the government should do more to support the increasing provision of private rented accommodation by housing associations and local authorities to help ease the housing crisis.

The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) says that a supportive approach will help the efforts of social landlords and councils to expand and improve private renting to help many low income families who cannot get access to social housing.

Private Renting: Can social landlords help? argues that private renting is weakly regulated and offers little security. Instead a more ‘light-handed’ approach to regulation governing the relationship between housing associations and councils, and the private rented sector, would help to expand and improve private renting to help low income families who cannot get access to social housing.

Anne Power, who led the research, said: “Our core conclusion is that long term, slow, stable investment in low cost, secure renting allows social landlords to use their management experience, their existing assets and their capacity to borrow, to expand private renting.

“This would lead to more socially responsible, more stable and therefore more useful private renting. Social landlords can do much more to house lower income households in receipt of Housing Benefit, but able to pay rent reliably with this help. This is an urgent task and a real opportunity for the sector.”

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