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Private evictions increasing during the recession

June 29th, 2010

According to legal information provider Sweet & Maxwell, private landlords filed 23% more repossession claims against their tenants during the credit crunch.

Private landlords now account for 17% of all repossession claims in the rented property sector compared to 11% in 2004, with repossession claims jumping from 17,047 to 21,004 between 2004 and 2008, an increase of 23%.

In comparison, repossession claims by social landlords fell by 23.5% from 136,198 to 104,165. However, social landlords are bound by rules for rent arrears to reduce the number of court disputes between tenants and landlords, which was introduced in 2006 to try and help tenants stay in their homes. These rules have proved to be successful in reducing the number of repossessions during the credit crunch.

Michael Donnellan, partner at Trower & Hamlins said, “The credit crunch led to a sudden drop in many tenants’ incomes. You don’t need to become unemployed to see your finances pushed over the edge. Private landlords have come under financial strain themselves and are likely to move much faster to replace a non-paying tenant with a paying tenant during a period of financial uncertainty.”

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