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Chamber and committees

Question reference: S5W-32288

  • Asked by: Alex Cole-Hamilton, MSP for Edinburgh Western, Scottish Liberal Democrats
  • Date lodged: 5 October 2020
  • Current status: Answered by Kevin Stewart on 21 October 2020


To ask the Scottish Government what plans it has to review the processes and prerequisites required for the eviction of tenants.


The Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Act 2016 introduced the most significant changes to private renting in over 30 years, including the new Private Residential Tenancy (PRT) which modernised the way landlords can recover possession of their properties. The new tenancy came into place on 1 December 2017 and a key part of understanding it’s impact on both landlords and tenants, will be to undertake effective monitoring and evaluation activity.

We are therefore participating in a research project, funded by the Nationwide Foundation, that seeks to understand the impacts on the sector of the new tenancy regime. The project – running over a three year period from 2019 to 2022 – aims to examine the impact of the changes on perceived and actual security of tenure, access to justice, affordability, landlord and tenant conduct, tenants on low incomes and tenants in housing need. This research is complimented by a wider monitoring and evaluation framework for the new tenancy regime being taken forward by the Scottish Government.

Furthermore, during the passage of the Private Housing Tenancies (Scotland) Bill through Parliament, the then Minister for Housing and Welfare, Margaret Burgess MSP, gave a commitment to review the grounds for repossession after the private residential tenancy had been in operation for 5 years (December 2022). To support this work, we are closely monitoring the eviction case decisions published by the First-tier Tribunal (Housing and Property Chamber).

You will be aware that the Scottish Government put in place a number of additional protections for renters in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, including extending the notice period a landlord has to give before initiating eviction action and to introduce temporary pre-action requirements. We are also closely monitoring the impact of these measures to help inform further policy development within the private rented sector.