Fair Rents (Scotland) Bill – a call for your views

The Local Government and Communities Committee has launched a call for views on the Fair Rents (Scotland) Bill, Propertymark will be responding and encourages others to feed their views into us to form our response.

About the Bill

The intention of the Bill is to:

  • impose caps on annual rent rises for private residential tenancies to no more than CPI + one per cent. There will also be powers afforded to the Scottish Government to vary the cap.
  • allow private residential tenants to ask for a “fair open market rent”
  • offer the tenants an option to appeal any rent increases with the First-Tier Tribunal or Rent Officer having the powers only to agree to the proposed rent increase or decide it should be lower
  • Provide Rent officers the powers to decrease the rent if the property is:
    • in generally poor condition
    • failing to meet the repairing standard,
    • has a poor energy efficiency
    • inadequate in terms of the standard of internal decor and furniture provided
    • not to cap the rent on any new tenancies
  • require private landlords to enter further detailed information in the landlord register about
    • the level of rents they charge
    • the number of occupiers
    • the number of bedrooms and living space in the property

Progression of the Bill

With the next parliamentary elections due next Spring and considering the ongoing impact of the pandemic, the Committee and the Parliament expect to have a very full work schedule. As the proposal for any law requires very careful consideration, there is a possibility the Bill will fall before the election is called.

The Committee undertakes to carefully consider all submissions it receives on the Bill and will decide on its next steps early in the New Year.

Your views count

The Committee is welcoming responses from those with an interest in the Bill and the consultation closes on Monday 7 December. ARLA Propertymark will also be submitting a response. If you would like to help shape our response, please send your comments on the Bill to [email protected] prior to the closing date.