There is legislation going through the Scottish Parliament just now which will make changes to private tenancies, Private Housing (Tenancies) Bill. Local people will know that private tenancies are important in the West End. There are some contradictions in this bill.
One of the main proposals in the legislation is to make it more difficult to evict tenants. This is something which I think is to be welcomed. At the moment too much power rests with private landlords and people should have more security of tenure.
This legislation might make it harder for anti-social tenants to be evicted. There are fears that frightened or intimidated neighbours might not be willing to speak out at tribunals being proposed in the Scottish Government’s Private Housing (Tenancies) Bill.
I have constituents who are already living in fear next to anti-social tenants and would not be willing to make themselves known. There are definitely people who have spoken to me who are at the end of their tether with anti-social behaviour but they don’t want to come forward and have their neighbours know they have complained.
I hope that MSPs will be aware of this dilemma as this legislation moves through the Scottish Parliament. It is important to ensure tenants get more power but it is also important that anti-social tenants can be dealt with effectively.
Private rented accommodation is a major part of the housing offer in the West End. It is important that the correct checks and balances are in place to ensure to make sure tenants are protected and anti-social behaviour is not tolerated.