UPDATE: DCLG has now confirmed that the consultation workshops scheduled between 28 April and 11 May have been cancelled.
Theresa May has called a snap general election, and assuming that she manages to command the 2/3rd majority she needs to circumvent the Fixed-Term Parliament Act, Parliament will shortly be dissolved ahead of a short campaign.
None of this is of exceptional interest to letting agents I know, aside from those letting to sitting MPs who may need to move in a hurry. However, what might be more interesting is the impact that the campaign may have on the consultation on the Government’s proposal to ban letting agent fees to tenants.
In the run-up to an election, public agencies (including central government) are limited in the way in which they can engage with the press and public on policy issues in order not to influence the outcome of the poll. This period is referred to as ‘purdah’ and restricts what kind of business government departments can carry out.
Government consultations are not necessarily impacted by purdah, or the dissolution of Parliament. However, publicity and events are generally discouraged meaning that the announced consultation events may not go ahead as planned (UKALA is waiting for confirmation).
Also, post-election (whoever wins) we will have a new government with no commitment to carry out any of the announced policies of the previous government.
I suspect that whichever leader is resident behind the famed black door of Number 10 they will want to continue with letting agent regulation – but this does at very least confuse matters a little more.