The government also confirmed details on a three-month mortgage payment holiday in new coronavirus measures
Renters won’t be able to be evicted for three months under new emergency legislation brought in because of coronavirus.
The government has introduced the package of measures to make sure no renter in either social or private accommodation will be forced out of their home during the Covid-19 outbreak.
Under new laws, landlords will not be able to start proceedings to evict tenants for at least a three-month period.
The government also confirmed the three-month mortgage payment holiday will be extended to landlords whose tenants are experiencing financial difficulties due to coronavirus.
At the end of this period, landlords and tenants will be expected to work together to establish an affordable repayment plan, taking into account tenants’ individual circumstances.
To support this announcement the government has worked with the Master of the Rolls to widen the ‘pre-action protocol’ on possession proceedings, to include private renters and to strengthen its remit.
This will support the necessary engagement between landlords and tenants to resolve disputes and landlords will have to reach out to tenants to understand the financial position they are in.
The government will also issue guidance which asks landlords to show compassion and to allow tenants who are affected by this to remain in their homes wherever possible.
The National Housing Federation and Local Government Association have welcomed the new support for social renters and made clear that no one should be evicted because of the coronavirus.
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick MP said: “The government is clear – no renter who has lost income due to coronavirus will be forced out of their home, nor will any landlord face unmanageable debts.
“These are extraordinary times and renters and landlords alike are of course worried about paying their rent and mortgage.
“Which is why we are urgently introducing emergency legislation to protect tenants in social and private accommodation from an eviction process being started.
“These changes will protect all renters and private landlords ensuring everyone gets the support they need at this very difficult time.”
Ben Beadle, Chief Executive of the National Residential Landlords Association said: “ Landlord groups welcomes government support.
“We recognize the exceptional circumstances and we will work collaboratively with the government to ensure these measures protect both landlords and tenants.”