Plans to reform private sector tenancy laws will remove the fear of eviction and help tenants to assert their rights, Housing Minister Margaret Burgess said today.
The consultation launched by the Scottish Government will see a major overhaul of legislation in the private rented sector.
The current “no-fault” repossession clause that allows landlords to reclaim their property simply because a fixed rental term has ended, will be scrapped.
Landlords will also have eleven modernised grounds to use if they wish to regain possession of their property, including a new ground if they wish to sell.
To protect tenants against rent hikes, tenants will be able to take unjustified rent rises to arbitration.
Specific measures may also be introduced to combat excessive increases in hot-spot areas such as Aberdeen and the Lothians.
This builds on an initial consultation last year, which received over 2,500 responses. Final proposals will be included in a Bill to be laid before Parliament this autumn.
Margaret Burgess said:
“These changes to existing tenancy laws are designed to improve security for tenants and provide safeguards for landlords, investors and lenders.
“Our vision is for a private rented sector that provides good quality homes and high management standards, inspires consumer confidence, and encourages growth through attracting increased investment.
“By creating a new and simplified system we will have better property management, while tenants and landlords will be provided with more clarity and a better understanding of what the tenancy agreement means for them.
“Tenants will have more security and can no longer be asked to leave their home simply because their tenancy agreement has reached its end date. They can assert their rights without fear of eviction.
“Increasing the supply of homes is the sustainable, long-term solution to addressing housing affordability. That is why we are investing over £1.7 billion to deliver our target of 30,000 affordable homes during the lifetime of this Parliament.”
The consultation will run until 10 May 2015 and can be viewed at http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2015/03/6142