asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is his estimate of the effect of the decontrol of business rents on small businesses; and what representation he has received about it.
A number of representations have been received about the size of rent increases becoming payable by small businesses when the standstill on business rents is lifted. The effect of the standstill was to prevent, while it lasted, rent increases which would otherwise have been due; and so it benefited only that proportion of tenants whose rents would have been due to rise during the standstill period. The effect of decontrol is to remove this temporary bar to the implementation of new rent levels agreed between the parties. The Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 affords a wide measure of protection to tenants negotiating new rents on renewal of their tenancy agreements.