Publication - Research and analysis

Second Consultation on a New Tenancy for the Private Sector: Analysis of Consultation Responses

Published: 3 Aug 2015
ISBN:
9781785445477

This report presents an analysis of responses to the Scottish Government's second public consultation on a proposed New Tenancy for the Private Sector. The consultation sought stakeholder views on proposals which had been further developed and in some cases amended following an initial consultation held in 2014.

Second Consultation on a New Tenancy for the Private Sector: Analysis of Consultation Responses
Introduction

Introduction

This report presents an analysis of responses to the Scottish Government's second consultation on the new tenancy for the private sector.

Background

The second consultation follows an earlier consultation that set out the Scottish Government's initial proposals for a new private tenancy system. The first consultation was held between October and December 2014, with 2,543 responses received.

As the first consultation paper noted, the overall aim of the proposed new system is to improve security of tenure for tenants, while giving suitable safeguards for landlords, lenders and investors. The Scottish Government has also made a commitment to developing a system that strikes a fair balance between the interests of tenants and landlords, and supports a professionally-run sector that is managed for the long-term benefit of landlords and lenders, as well as tenants. All of these commitments remain in place at the time of the second consultation.

In the second consultation, the Scottish Government set out those areas in which it intended to proceed with its initial proposals. Further detail has been provided about some proposals (particularly in relation to grounds for repossession), and in some cases proposals have been amended. Having invited views and gathered information about rent levels in the first consultation, the Scottish Government has now made specific proposals in this area.

The consultation ran from 30 March to 10 May 2015 and asked 26 questions.

Profile of respondents

A total of 7,689 consultation responses were received. Of these 340 were standard responses and 7,349 were campaign responses. A profile of standard respondents by type is set out in Table 1 below. A list of the organisations that submitted a response to the consultation is included as Annex 1 to this report.

Points to note about the standard respondents are:

  • A number of respondents drew on text from one of the campaigns but amended that text in some way. Most of these respondents were landlord or letting agent respondents drawing on the text from the Scottish Association of Landlords campaign (discussed below).
  • A small number of respondents included supporting statements or letters from others as part of their response or noted that their submission was supported by others.
  • Although all respondents have been assigned a single respondent type group, some have a dual interest. In particular, a small number of respondents who have been classified as landlords noted that they also offer advice or support or have a general interest in the well-being of those living in the private rented sector. This group included both third sector and university respondents.

Table 1: Standard responses received by type of respondent

Type of respondent

Number

Advice, Information & Ombudsman Services

7

Campaign Body or Group

10

Industry Body

14

Landlord

44

Legal Body or Firm

5

Letting Agent and/or Property Management

37

Local Authority

17

Tenant and/or Resident Group

3

Union or Political Party

4

Other

6

Total Organisations

(147)

Individuals

193

TOTAL

340

Campaigns connected with four different groups were organised:

  • Living Rent Campaigns: A total of 2,491 respondents supported the Living Rent Campaign. Of these, 2,127 respondents either signed an e-petition (1,036 signatories) or submitted a postcard containing equivalent text to the e-petition (1,091 respondents). This is referred to as the Living Rent petition. In addition, another 364 postcards setting out an alternative text were submitted. This is referred to as the Living Rent postcards.
  • Scottish Association of Landlords Campaigns: A total of 3,280 respondents made a submission related to the Scottish Association of Landlords (SAL). Of these, 3,215 were signatories to an e-petition organised by SAL. This is referred to as the SAL petition. In addition, 65 respondents made a submission on the standard consultation response form but containing the same set of answers as each other. This set of answers reflected the main group responses made by SAL and the Council of Letting Agents. This group of responses is referred to as the SAL form-based campaign.
  • PRS4Scotland Campaign: A total of 1,553 respondents were signatories to an e-petition organised by PRS4Scotland. This is referred to as the PRS4Scotland petition.
  • Letting Agent Campaign: A total of 25 respondents submitted a response identical to that of a letting agency. These responses came from different branches of that organisation. This is referred to as the letting agent campaign.

Please note that each of the four organisations connected with a campaign have also been included as a group respondent (the Living Rent Campaign and PRS4Scotland as campaign bodies, SAL as an industry body and the letting agent company as a letting agent).

Structure of the report

The remainder of this report presents a question-by-question analysis of responses given at each of the questions set out in the consultation document.

The results from the 'Yes/No' questions contained within the written consultation are presented in tabular form. The consultation response form set out three possible responses (Yes, No and Don't know). A small number of respondents amended the form to give a mixed response (such as 'Yes and No' or 'Yes but only if…'). These responses have been recorded as 'Mixed' within the tables set out below.

A small number of respondents did not make a submission on the consultation response form but submitted their comments in a statement-style format. When these responses contained clear answers to one or more of the 'Yes/No' questions these have been recorded. The remaining content was analysed qualitatively under the most directly relevant consultation question. This approach has also been taken to the analysis of further comments made by those using the standard response form.

Given the scale of the response, this report focuses on presenting the overall balance of opinion and the most frequently raised points. However, many of the responses did contain detailed comments or suggestions and all materials have been given close scrutiny by the Scottish Government. In addition, the responses of all those who agreed to publication are available on the Scottish Government's website.


Contact

Email: Hannah Davidson