““There’s an opposite to déjà vu. They call it jamais vu. It’s when you meet the same people or visit places, again and again, but each time is the first. Everybody is always a stranger. Nothing is ever familiar.”
― Chuck Palahniuk, Choke”
“No doubt the news had spread that a Technician was coming through.”
― Isaac Asimov, The End of Eternity
I hope you are well I am wondering where this year has gone!
After the shocking announcement by the first minister on Tuesday we wanted to send out an email to advise you on the information as we have it.
Colin, Robin and I are participating in branch meetings and webinars today to gain as much information as possible about the change and the practicalities of it.
The announcement – 6th September 2022 – Immediate rent freeze and eviction ban
Setting out the programme for government for the next 12 months First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced on Tuesday to the Scottish Parliament that emergency legislation will be introduced to freeze all rents and ban evictions in the private and social rented sector in response to the cost of living crisis.
These measures will be in place until at least 31 March 2023 and it was made clear that the rent freeze will apply from the 6th September 2022.
Scottish Associations of Landlords chief executive John Blackwood responded to the First Minister’s announcement saying: “Since rumours of this announcement broke this morning, I have been inundated by landlords saying they will be removing their vacant properties from the rental market, and I don’t blame them.”
“Instead of helping tenants pay their bills, the Scottish Government has chosen to penalise people who have provided the homes politicians have failed to provide for decades.”
“Once again the Scottish Government fails to grasp the reality of Scotland’s housing crisis and has chosen the easy option of attacking landlords for political reasons which will only further reduce the supply of housing, putting more people at risk. This is not a solution, it will only cause more hardship.
“In just a few weeks, we will see more stories of students and others who can’t find suitable accommodation. We warned of this last year and nothing was done but no one should be in any doubt where the blame for that new crisis will lie. It will be at the door of Bute House.”
“Despite reassurances from Scottish Ministers that they value the role private landlords play in provided much needed housing, we are astounded that once again they have chosen to attack landlords at a time when they should be encouraging landlords and tenants to work together to overcome financial hardship.”
7 September 2022 – Rent increase freeze & eviction ban update – An update, however still no details from government
Following the freeze on rent increases and eviction ban announced by the First Minister yesterday (see information here), SAL chief executive John Blackwood met the minister in charge of these policies last night (Patrick Harvie MSP, Minister for Zero Carbon Buildings, Active Travel and Tenants’ Rights) to demand more details of what these measures will entail.
Astonishingly Mr Harvie was unable to provide any information on how the rent freeze and eviction ban will work. Nor was he able to provide any information on how they will affect rent increase notices already issued or eviction action already commenced. He advised that the detail of the policies is still being worked on by civil servants who will contact us to provide more information “in due course”. Mr Harvie did advise that they are looking at how to support landlords and they are aware that landlords who have tenants’ rent inclusive of utility bills are facing particular pressure on their finances.
SAL chief executive John Blackwood commented “Following yesterday’s shocking announcement by the First Minister, and my meeting with Mr Harvie, the Scottish Government clearly has no idea how they are going to implement this policy or when legislation will be laid before parliament. Uncertainty around how the policies will operate is causing unnecessary anxiety for landlords and tenants alike.
We have even received queries from tenants today saying they cannot get through on tenant helplines, which are clearly overwhelmed with enquiries in the same way we are with queries from our members. The fact that Scottish Ministers have chosen to “kick landlords where it hurts” is totally unacceptable and I, ahead of the publication of legislation, am already considering our next steps and future legal action that could be open to us.”
These measures will be in place until at least 31 March 2023 and it was made clear that the freeze on rent increases will apply from 6 September 2022.
We ask you to please wait for our next update rather than phoning or emailing just now to ask us for more details on the practicalities for your tenancies. Right now the only information we have is what is set out above. We will update with further information as soon as we have it.
Catch up via the links below.
Should you wish to join the Scottish Association of landlords Here’s the joining link
As I say we shall keep you updated as and when we have more information.
Please be advised that due to the current coronavirus outbreak we are currently working from home. As a result, it may take us slightly longer to process applications, payments and respond to any queries. This also means that we are unable to receive anything by post so please send any correspondence to us via email. We are working hard to keep everything running as smoothly as possible and appreciate your patience as we attempt to work through these exceptional circumstances.
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