While the initial notice is only the first stage of a legal process, many tenants move out before the case reaches court, says Generation Rent, which campaigns on behalf of those in rented accommodation. This was despite the Government last month extending the Covid ban on evictions in all but the most serious cases until May 31. Nearly a third (32 percent) of those surveyed also said they were concerned about the possibility of being asked to move out this year.
Alicia Kennedy, director of Generation Rent, said: “A Section 21 notice pulls the rug out from under you.
“As long as the landlord serves it correctly, you have to move out.
“That means very few tenants challenge it in court.
“And because landlords don’t need a reason for eviction, it also means many tenants live in fear of losing their home.”
She said it meant that “families throughout England have no confidence to put down roots in their local area”. Nearly 900 private renters across England were surveyed in February.
Sue James, chair of the Renters’ Reform Coalition, a new group comprising charities, think tanks and housing organisations, said: “Private renters face high rents, poor living conditions and perpetual instability.
“This causes needless disruption to people’s lives: their finances, work, health and their children’s education. Renters need certainty to enable them to put down roots in communities and create real homes in rented properties.
“Having been a frontline legal housing adviser for many years, I have seen the difference that good quality, secure housing can make to people’s lives.
“We need to see people’s homes as more than just terms in a contract.”