What will the General Election mean for the Renters Reform Bill?

With a General Election set to take place on July 4th we look at what the outcome might mean for the property market.

Renters Reform Bill

The Renters Reform Bill, a topic of intense debate over the years, is currently navigating its way through Parliament. With the general election on the horizon, many are wondering what will happen to this significant piece of legislation.

Having progressed through the House of Commons, the Bill now needs to go through the committee stage in the House of Lords, a process that typically takes several weeks. Given the approaching election, Parliament will soon enter what’s known as the ‘wash-up’ period. This is a brief window between the calling of an election and the dissolution of Parliament. During this time, any unfinished parliamentary business, including bills that haven’t received Royal Assent, will fall and not carry over to the next Parliament.

While it’s possible to fast-track legislation with strong political will and cross-party cooperation, the Renters Reform Bill’s complexity makes this a daunting task. Labour has stated they will not oppose the Bill as it stands, which could, in theory, speed the process up. However, given the limited time before Parliament dissolves this feels unlikely. The comprehensive review required at the committee stage is unlikely to be completed in the short timeframe.

Should the Conservative Government remain in power the Bill could be reintroduced, potentially with some adjustments based on feedback and new priorities set by the election results.

A victorious Labour Government might bring back the Bill with significant revisions or introduce entirely new rental reforms aligned with their policies, which may be less favourable for landlords.

The urgency and prioritisation of the Renters Reform Bill will depend heavily on the political landscape post-election, but we can be confident that housing needs are going to be omnipresent.

While there is a slim chance the Renters Reform Bill could pass before Parliament dissolves, it’s more likely it will need to be reintroduced in the next Parliament. The Bill’s future hinges on the outcome of the election and the priorities of the newly elected government.

Demand vs Supply

All sectors of the UK property market are struggling to keep up with demand. A lack of quality rental stock is driving rental prices up. The stilted provision of affordable housing is unable to meet the demand of first time buyers. These fundamental issues which are intrinsically linked to the wider economy will likely be at the forefront of campaigner’s agendas. A complete overhaul of the sector could well be on the cards with potential stamp duty cuts.

Interest Rates

The fact that inflation is now close to the Bank of England’s target is welcome news. As is the likelihood of an interest rate drop, which will inevitably grease the wheels of all sectors of the UK housing market.

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