Responsible landlords have nothing to fear on rent controls, says Harvie

The tenants’ rights minister was asked about measures proposed in the Housing Bill, which was published on Wednesday.

Responsible landlords have nothing to fear from Scotland’s rent controls, says Patrick Harvie PA Media

Landlords who offer quality homes at a fair price have nothing to worry about from the Scottish Government’s rent control area proposals, Patrick Harvie has said.

The tenants’ rights minister said the Housing Bill, which was published on Wednesday, will mean those who wish to “price gouge” can no longer do so.

The Bill will place a duty on local councils to carry out assessments within their areas on the state of the private rented sector, making recommendations to ministers about the imposition of rent controls, which could cap prices for tenants.

The Scottish Association of Landlords has claimed it will lead to reduced investment and landlords leaving the private rented sector.

Speaking to the BBC’s Sunday Show, the Scottish Green co-leader Harvie said a long-term framework is needed to encourage good behaviour by landlords.

Patrick Harvie said housebuilding should be based on ‘social need’ PA Media

He said: “Those landlords who take a pride in offering high-quality homes at a fair price, looking after the wellbeing of their tenants, should have nothing to worry about from these proposals.

“But those who want to price gouge have to recognise that that kind of practice is going to come to an end.”

Harvie also said housebuilding should be focused on “social need” rather than constructing expensive houses to “maximise profit”.

He was pressed on comments from Jane Wood of the housebuilding industry body Homes for Scotland, who attacked cuts to the Government’s housing budget.

Harvie said: “The long-term track record of the Scottish Government on building affordable housing is significantly better than other parts of the UK. We want to continue that.

“If Westminster cuts our capital budget, it clearly, inevitably, has a knock-on consequence, a harmful consequence, in what we can invest in Scotland.”

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