New Legislation Aims To Improve Private Rented Sector

Legislation aimed to reform the private rented sector, including increased protections for people and families, has been introduced by Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey

Announcing the new Bill, Minister Hargey said: "For many the private rented sector provides flexibility, for others it may be while they wait for a social home or one day own their own home. For all those who call the private rented sector home, they deserve safe, secure accommodation.

"I have already extended the emergency legislation I put in place at the start of the pandemic to extend the notice to quit period a landlord must give a tenant to 12 weeks. This will now be in place until May 2022.
News Image
"The Bill I am taking through the Assembly will also deliver a number of protections for private renters including a permanent extension to the Notice to Quit period. In the longer term, I will address issues such as letting agent regulation, grounds for eviction and fitness standards."

The Bill contains a number of proposed improvements including:

• restricting rent increases to once in a 12 month period;

• extending the notice to quit period a landlord must give a tenant;

• setting limits on tenancy deposit amounts; and

• making it a mandatory requirement for private landlords to provide smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and to carry out periodic electrical checks.

The new Bill is currently at Committee Stage.

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

06 July 2021
New Private Tenancies Bill Introduced To The Assembly
A new Private Tenancies Bill has been introduced to the Assembly, which aims to improve protections for tenants living in the private rented sector. Announcing the bill, Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey said: "I am putting the needs of tenants at the heart of my approach.
12 June 2009
Minister's Overhaul Of Private Rental Sector
Social Development Minister Margaret Ritchie has launched, for consultation, a new strategy to overhaul the private rental housing sector in Northern Ireland. This is the first time government backed initiative ever to address the private rented sector. Launching the consultation Ms Ritchie said the housing sector "needs to be overhauled".
14 September 2021
New Private Tenancies Bill Moves To Second Stage In The Assembly
The new Private Tenancies Bill, which aims to improve protections for tenants living in the private rented sector, has moved to the second stage in the Assembly.
15 December 2021
Alliance Welcomes Executive Rejection Of DUP Abortion Bill Restrictions
Alliance has welcomed a decision by the Executive to reject a DUP Private Member's Bill which aimed to restrict women's right to choose.
14 December 2021
Justice Minister Announces Reform Of Court Committal Process
Justice Minister Naomi Long has announced new legislation to reform the court committal process. The Criminal Justice (Committal Reform) Bill, which was passed in the Assembly today, contains measures which will remove some avoidable delay in the current system and reduce the impact of giving oral evidence on victims and witnesses.