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  • Writer's pictureSarah Ruivivar

Scottish Rent Control Verdict: A Blow to Landlords


Image credits: Towfiqu barbhuiya / Unsplash

Scotland’s Court of Session has given a nod of approval to the Scottish Government regarding rent controls, much to the dismay of landlords and agents.


The Scottish Association of Landlords, Propertymark and the Scottish Land & Estates body had challenged the Cost of Living (Tenant Protection) (Scotland) Act 2022, seeking a Judicial Review. However, the court ruled in favour of the government, stating that the legislation doesn't infringe landlords’ rights under the European Convention on Human Rights.


The judgement emphasised that it's parliament's prerogative to determine what constitutes an 'emergency situation' and the 'proportionate response' to it.


While the decision has left SAL and Propertymark feeling deflated, they remain committed to defending the rights of private rented sector providers. SAL warns that this ruling may exacerbate Scotland's housing crisis, as more landlords may decide to exit, reducing the number of available rental homes.


Propertymark echoed these sentiments, labelling the news as "hugely detrimental" to the Scottish private rental sector. Despite the implementation of rent controls, rents in Scotland have seen a 13.7% annual rise as at Q3 2023, pushing average rents to around £1115 per month.


The verdict has raised concerns among landlords about their future in the sector. However, the true impact remains to be seen until the next Scottish Housing Survey is published.


Nathan Emerson, CEO at Propertymark, expressed his disappointment, stating that the decision showed a lack of understanding of the economics of providing high-quality homes. He emphasised the need for housing policies to include comprehensive impact assessments to ensure a workable system for all parties involved.


So, folks, it seems the tides are turning for landlords in Scotland. As always, we'll be here to keep you updated on the latest twists and turns in the property world. Stay tuned!



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