Nearly three in 10 (28%) landlords plan to issue a Section 21 notice in the next 12-18 months, before the ban comes into force, a survey carried out by Landlord Action found.
The majority (42%) said the reason is based on concerns that they will be unable to gain possession easily in the future, and 24% attributed their decision to increasing legislation driving their decision to sell up.
Paul Shamplina, founder of Landlord Action and chief commercial officer for the Hamilton Fraser Group, said: “The response to our latest survey paints a very clear picture of the unintended consequences of abolishing Section 21.
“More than a quarter of tenants who have or will be asked to leave their rental properties (via receipt of a Section 21 notice), are in such a position not because they have done anything wrong but because landlords fear they will be unable to gain possession of their property easily in the future, if their circumstances change.
“Competition for rental properties is already at an all-time high, and we could be heading towards a rental stock crisis. It has been reported that in some parts of London, for example, tenants are offering up to a year’s rent in advance. But for most, this simply isn’t feasible.
“Whilst we don’t know how many of the properties sold will remain in the buy to let sector, it’s clear that tenants will ultimately suffer as the combination of pressures forces rents to continue to rise.
“Landlords need reassurance and clarity on the future of evictions soon if the sector is to avoid a deluge of evictions and homelessness.”
A third (34%) of landlords surveyed have served a Section 21 notice in the past 12 months.
The most common reasons given were rent arrears (31%), landlords selling their property (26%) and anti-social behaviour (22%).