Housing minister hints at longer minimum length for tenancies AGAIN

Esther McVey says longer tenancies promote better mental health for tenants and says a decision will be made after the AST consultation ends in October.


Esther Mcvey Housing Minister image

Housing minister Esther McVey has hinted heavily that the Government will introduce regulations to introduce a longer minimum tenancy period for renters as part of its proposed reforms of the Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) system.

In her first parliamentary written reply to an enquiry since being appointed a housing minister, McVey told Welsh MP Chris Ruane that: “Earlier this year, the Government announced its commitment to improve security for renters, and intends to introduce a new, fairer deal for both tenants and landlords.

“A number of people responded that increased security would improve tenants’ mental health and well-being.

“In particular respondents mentioned that fewer house moves could help tenants have better access to local amenities, such as schools and GP clinics, and feel more integrated into their communities.”


In July the government published its consultation document on the reform of AST which is due to close on October 12th which includes the controversial proposal to abolish Section 21 eviction notices, which would effectively make ASTs indistinguishable from assured or open-ended tenancies.

The consultation also asks letting agents, tenants and landlords to comment once more on whether tenancy length should be extended after a previous consultation was inconclusive on this point and that led to initial assumptions that compulsory three-year tenancies would be abandoned as a proposal.

“The Government will collaborate with and listen to tenants, landlords and others in the sector to develop a more effective system that works for everybody,” says McVey.


  1. Julian I sadly agree with you on consultation they listen to Shelter and the industry counts for nought. The fee ban is a case in point as rents are rising to cover increased costs and my tenants will be out of pocket to prove the governments efforts to save tenants money.
    I can only speak for my business we have a current tenancy average of around 46 months so a longer tenancy is pointless for us. Will this longer tenancy fixed term be binding on both parties? as many tenants specifically ask for six months as they do not wish to be tied. My experience of the last 17 years with landlords is that they want to have long term tenants and provided the rent is paid and the property looked after I have yet to have a landlord end a tenancy except to move back in or sell. More pointless legislation.

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