According to a report by the Citizens Advice Bureau, the number of private sector tenants being evicted even though they are up to date with their rent is growing. They have seen a 38% increase in instances of tenants without rent arrears being threatened with eviction from homes in the private rented sector. 5,000 issues of this nature were brought to them in 2013/14, up from 3,750 the previous year.
The charity says the most common cause of homelessness for its clients is eviction by private landlords. These problems are particularly acute in London and the South East, where the charity was approached with 900 issues caused by people being evicted without having run up arrears in the first three months of 2014, up from 400 the previous year.
Gillian Guy, chief executive of Citizens Advice, said, “Tenants are being treated as cash cows as a chronic housing shortage pushes up prices and forces renters out of their homes. Competition for properties means that tenants are easy to replace, increasing insecurity for people trying to create a home in the private rented sector.”
The National Landlords Association responded to the claims, saying that, as has been the case with reports by Shelter, the findings do not chime with government statistics. These show that only 9% of tenancies are ended by the landlord, and 90% of these are because of rent arrears.
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