This week’s Labour conference has kicked off with the party reaffirming controversial reforms to the private sector.
Speaking at the conference in Manchester, Hilary Benn MP vowed to mend the broken housing market. He called for three-year tenancy agreements as standard, a ban on excessive rent increase, and a ban on letting agents’ fees to tenants.
He said: “Young people doing all they can to save, but knowing that their dream of owning a home is moving further and further out of reach. So they end up renting, and often find themselves paying off someone else’s mortgage, rather than one on a home of their own.
“They probably have a short term tenancy and worry that the rent may jump up, even if they get a new contract.
“And if their children are about to start primary school, what kind of security and stability is there if they may be forced to move away from friends and neighbours next year?
“We all hear these stories, but this government doesn’t get it. Well we do – and that’s why we are determined to introduce three year tenancies; to put a ceiling on rent increases; to scrap lettings agent fees for tenants; and to build at least 200,000 homes a year by the end of the next Parliament.”
Benn went on to say that if it came to power, Labour would work with councils so that they can build more council houses.