Steps To Close The Door On Private Rental Evictions In The UK

A painting detail of a disconsolate farmer, evicted and forced to sell his belongs in 1874, including his horse.
Detail from "The Sale of Old Dobbin' painting, depicting a rural English eviction in 1874. Read some of the story here

The Centre for Homelessness Impact (the Centre) has issued a report about renting homes in the private market1.

The Centre’s report draws attention to evictions in the private rental sector, which has become the country’s biggest source of homelessness.

UK private sector landlords currently do not need a reason to evict tenants when their lease expires (also known as a no-fault eviction). Leases typically run for six months or a year. Short term leases may be attractive to people who are highly mobile, but those who want to stay for a bit face the continual possibility of eviction.

The report’s authors make a number of recommendations to reform the private rental sector. All are based on evidence of what is contributing to homelessness and what helps to prevent it. One recommendation is to change the no-fault eviction rule, which would give tenants more housing stability.

This report appeared around the same time as an article from the United States. Both discuss the right to housing and how it helps to make a case for reforms to housing policies and programs. Both identify practical steps to realize the right to adequate housing by preventing evictions, including

    • increasing financial assistance to households with low earnings,
    • adding more housing that is affordable for residents with very low incomes, and
    • changing regulations to make tenancies more stable.

You can read the UK report at the Centre for Homelessness Impact: Tackling Tenancy Insecurity In The Private Rented Sector – What Works To Prevent Homelessness?

For more on the US report, try: Human Right To Housing: Four Steps To End A USA Eviction Crisis


  1. There is certain irony in the timing of this report. For years, Hong Kong has topped the list as the most expensive housing market in the world, in 2022 this distinction shifted to London England.