Yesterday (8 June) Grant Shapps, the new Housing Minister, gave his first speech at the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.
The speech, entitled ‘Age of Aspiration’, is primarily focused on reactivating the traditional Conservative aim of mass home ownership and how this might be encouraged.
Although it is not in the press release or the draft text it is reported that Mr Shapps stated that he was not in favour of heavy regulation of the Private Rented Sector and made clear that the national landlord’s register, a flagship proposal of the previous Government, was to be scrapped. He promised further responses to the suggestion made in the Rugg review soon. Mr Shapps did say that “We will deal with rogue landlords, but we won’t do that by penalising everybody.” It would seem, therefore, that some new legislation is on the cards but, given the new drive for localism, it is likely to involve handing more powers to local authorities to prosecute or control bad landlords in their areas rather than introducing new forms of centralised control.