Scotland proposes rent freeze amid energy crisis

Tenants are not fully protected from the announced energy bill relief measures, a Scottish Greens MSP has said

Big Zero Report 2022

A rent freeze bill passed its first stage at the Scottish Parliament yesterday.

The proposal aims to help people amid the rising cost of living and the energy crisis.

The legislation will temporarily freeze rents until at least 31st March 2023 and ban evictions in Scotland.

Green MSP for Glasgow Patrick Harvie said: “Tenants have on average lower household incomes, higher levels of poverty and are more vulnerable to economic shocks. 63% of social rented households and 40% of private rented households don’t have enough savings to cover even a month of income at the poverty line.

“That’s compared to 24% of households buying with a mortgage and 9% who own outright. Not many households will escape the cost crisis altogether, but tenants are just so much more exposed. That’s why this bill will provide tenants in the private and social rented sectors with greater protection.”

Mr Harvie said the UK Government‘s response to the energy crisis through the energy price guarantee “does fall far short of what’s needed to help protect people from severe financial hardship”.

He said: “Tenants don’t just need help with their housing and energy costs. They need to feel secure at home over winter.”

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