Call for sweeping reforms in renting

MANY tenants in Hastings and St Leonards are facing insecure tenancies and high fees from letting agents, it has been claimed.

Sarah Owen, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Hastings and Rye, has backed plans for sweeping reforms of the private rented housing sector which she said will help millions of households caught in the cost-of-living crisis.

Nine million people are living in rented homes today, nearly 12,000 of them live in Hastings.

Sarah said the next Labour government would ban letting agents’ fees for tenants, saving renters on average £355 in costs.

Hastings resident Richard Rogers and his fiancée rent and welcomed the proposals.

He said: “For people who are forced to rent due to the inaccessibility of first-time housing, this announcement is welcomed.

“My fiancée and I are fortunate that our landlord has agreed to a three-year tenancy, though this hasn’t always been our experience.

“Longer tenancies are mutually beneficial to both landlord and tenant, giving both parties a sense of security and stability, and allowing for both parties to plan for the future.”

Sarah said: “This is very good news for the nearly 12,000 people who rent in Hastings.

“It gives renters a real chance to put roots down, manage their household budgets and plan ahead.

“Anyone who has rented a home would have experienced the nightmare of tenancy agreement fees from letting agents - costing new tenants and those renewing contracts around £355 each time.

“One of the biggest causes of Britain’s cost-of-living crisis is the price of renting or buying a home.”