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Ed Miliband has been accused of launching a “populist tirade” against private rented sector (PRS) landlords, by the Residential Landlords Association (RLA).

According to the RLA, comments the Labour leader made this week about PRS tenants living in fear and having to face unpredictable rent rises “bear little resemblance to fact”.

Countering Miliband’s claims, the RLA has highlighted that:

• Data from the Office for National Statistics shows that rents are falling in real terms.

• The English Housing Survey shows that just 7% of tenancies are ended by a landlord, the vast majority of which are because tenants aren’t paying rent or committing anti-social behaviour.

• 84% of PRS tenants are now satisfied with their housing according to the English Housing Survey compared to 81% in the social sector.

• The average length of residence for tenants in private rented housing is 3.8 years and the English Housing Survey notes that “in general, those who had lived in their home for longer paid less rent.”

Savaging Miliband, Alan Ward, RLA chairman, said: “Once again Labour are playing to people’s fears and engaging in the politics of cheap populism rather than reality.

“The RLA would be the first to admit that there are many challenges facing the sector, but the debate needs to be based on sound evidence. Sadly, Ed Miliband has departed from the facts.”

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