HC Deb 24 July 1969 vol 787 cc2213-4

Lords Amendments No. 24: In page 47, line 18, at end insert new Clause "C"— C. At the end of section 46 of the Rent Act 1968 (determination of fair rent) there shall be added the following subsection:— '(4) In this section "improvement" includes the replacement of any fixture or fitting.'

Mr. MacColl

I beg to move, That this House doth agree with the Lords in the said Amendment.

This new Clause deals with one of the old thorny problems of Rent Act legis- lation, namely, the distinction between improvements and repairs.

Section 46(3) of the Rent Act, 1968, requires rent officers and rent assessment committees, when determining the fair rent, to disregard improvements carried out by tenants otherwise than in pursuance of the terms of the tenancy. Although it is not expected that in the majority of cases the Amendment will make any appreciable difference to the amount of the rent, it is considered fair and just that a tenant who pays for work which adds to the comfort and convenience of his house should not have to pay additional rent as a result of it, and that the landlord who does improvements can get increased rents. In the case of repairs the landlord is assumed to fulfil his obligations and therefore they are not separately treated.

It was found, when the Housing (Scotland) Bill was going through, that a Government Amendment was made to deal with replacement. It seemed sensible to have the same provisions in this Bill as in the Scottish Bill.

Question put and agreed to.

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