If you are a tenant who is impacted by the lifting of the eviction ban, there are three new options that may apply to you:
1) if you are in receipt of HAP/RAS and are facing eviction and are deemed at risk of homelessness by the local authority, the Local Authority can purchase the home from the landlord to keep the tenant in situ. In this case, it is advised that the tenant reach out to the local authority to initiate this process.
2) If you are not in receipt of HAP/RAS but at risk of homelessness following an eviction notice, the local Council can purchase the home from the landlord and rent it to the tenant as a cost-rental tenancy which is a secure, indefinite tenancy. By the Summer, legislation will be introduced to give the local Council and/or Approved Housing Body the right to first refusal to purchase the home from the landlord and rent it to the tenant as cost-rental.
3) For tenants who are in a position to purchase their home, they will be given first refusal on buying the home from the landlord and can apply for State-backed shared equity scheme and Local Authority Home Loan. The right of first refusal will come to effect once legislation is passed around Summer time.
As well as preventing homelessness, these measures will result in long-term security of tenure for tenants. This will apply to any tenant facing evictions and measures 1-2 will apply to those who are deemed at risk of homelessness, which is defined in 1988 Homeless Act as follows:
There is no accommodation available that, in the opinion of the local authority, you and any other person who normally lives with you, can reasonably stay or remain in
You are living in a hospital, county home, night shelter or other such institution, and you are living there because you have no suitable accommodation
You are, in the opinion of the local authority, unable to provide accommodation from your own resources