Rent arrears put thousands at risk as end of eviction ban in England looms

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MPs and charities fear a wave of homelessness when landlords can once again legally force out tenants in debt

Clare Austin* and family live in a privately rented house in Hertfordshire. She and her husband could afford the monthly rent of £1,700 when they were both working but when he lost his job a couple of years ago, they fell behind with their payments. He got another job and things were almost back on track when Covid hit and both were furloughed.

“We can’t claim anything as we’re furloughed, but my husband is a salesman and only getting 80% of his basic pay,” said Austin, who works for a travel company. “My biggest concern is the rent arrears.”

Related: How do we fix the UK housing crisis?

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