BREAKING: Announcement expected today on ‘compulsory mediation’ during evictions

The government is to rule out any extension the evictions ban but plans to force landlords and tenants to attend mediation sessions before going to court, it has been reported.

It recently set up a £3m voluntary mediation scheme that offers landlords and tenants free mediation support via a telephone/Zoom service, but LandlordZONE understands take-up has been patchy as most landlord/tenants disputes have gone past the point of no return at the late point in the process when the service is available.

The proposals will be revealed when Steve Barclay, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, makes a statement to parliament today following Prime Minister’s Question Time that will outline proposals to solve rental disputes for both residential and commercial tenancies, the i newspaper reports.

Covid restrictions

The proposals will form part of the government’s plans to help the economy cope with the ongoing Covid restrictions, which are now in place until at least 19th July following the Prime Minister’s recent announcement.

It is also reported that Barclay will announce that several Covid relief schemes are not to be extended including business rates relief, furlough and the VAT payments holiday.

The proposals from Steve Barclay will be disappointing news for landlords.

As LandlordZONE reported yesterday, rather than being forced to undertake mediation with tenants in rent arrears, the NRLA and many other organisations have been pushing for greater financial support from government to help tenants pay off their debt and stay in their homes.

furlough

“The Chancellor has clearly decided on a strategy of making landlords the scapegoats for a crisis of his own making,” says NRLA chief Ben Beadle (pictured).

“For less than the cost of the ‘Eat Out to Help Out Scheme’ he could provide landlords and tenants with the financial support they need to keep tenants in their homes and prevent damage to credit scores.”

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