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Revealed: Number of Newham families thrown out of their homes through 'no-fault' evictions

PUBLISHED: 14:00 28 May 2019 | UPDATED: 07:48 30 May 2019

Picture: Yui Mok/PA.

Picture: Yui Mok/PA.

PA Wire/PA Images

Thousands of Newham families have been removed from their homes under controversial "no-fault" evictions over the last five years, new figures reveal.

The government recently pledged to abolish the "unfair evictions", where landlords can remove tenants at short notice and without giving a specific reason.

Ministry of Justice data shows that 3,130 renting households in Newham were subject to an "accelerated possession" order in the five years, up to March this year.

These orders allow landlords to apply to the courts to remove tenants who have not left the property by the date set out in a section 21 notice.

Section 21s can be given with as little as eight weeks' notice once the fixed term in a renter's tenancy agreement expires.

Though the data shows more than 3,000 households were evicted under the orders, because many cases do not go to court, the actual number of cases could be much higher.

Campaign group Generation Rent said that a combination of rising rents, stagnant wages and declining welfare support had fuelled an increase in evictions in recent years.

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"Analysis by Generation Rent shows that high house prices correlate with rising evictions, as buy-to-let landlords kick out tenants to cash in on their properties," said Hannah Slater, who is from the group.

"Section 21 is commonly used for revenge evictions when tenants ask for repairs, and has fuelled buy-to-let and driven up housing costs."

In total, there were 4,310 landlord evictions in the borough over the five-year time period.

Of those, 3,130 were accelerated repossessions, 549 were evictions by private landlords, and 631 by social landlords.

Across England and Wales, almost 70,000 households were subject to an accelerated possession order in the same period.

Last month, prime minister Theresa May vowed to end "unfair evictions" to stop landlords being able to "unexpectedly evict families with only eight weeks' notice".

A Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government spokeswoman said: "This government is committed to rebalancing the relationship between tenants and landlords to deliver a fairer, good quality and more affordable private rented sector.

"That's why we are putting an end to "no-fault evictions" by repealing Section 21 of the Housing Act, giving tenants greater security as part of our ongoing work to make a better system for both tenants and landlords."

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