RURAL landlords say Government plans for longer tenancies on rented homes could hit seasonal workers in agriculture and tourism.

The Government is proposing minimum three-year contracts to help renters "put down roots" and feel more secure, and to give landlords "longer term financial security".

However, rural landlords fear this would "threaten the short-term lettings market and reduce the availability of rented homes in the countryside", according to the CLA, who says its members provide nearly 40 per cent of all private rented housing in rural England and Wales.

"Overly prescriptive" tenancy lengths could jeopardise the short-term lettings market for seasonal workers in farming and tourism, said the CLA's housing advisor, Matthew O'Connell.

He added: "An excessive regulatory burden could also lead to potential long-term rental homes being lost as landlords opt to let them as holiday accommodation or sell, further reducing the supply of rented homes for those struggling to get on the housing ladder."

According to the Government, people stay in rented homes for an average of nearly four years. Despite this, 81 per cent of tenancies have a minimum fixed term of just six or 12 months - leaving tenants "feeling insecure, unable to challenge poor property standards for fear of tenancies being terminated, and unable to plan for their future".

Secretary of State for Communities, James Brokenshire, said: "It is deeply unfair when renters are forced to uproot their lives or find new schools for their children at short notice due to the terms of their rental contract.

"Being able to call your rental property your home is vital to putting down roots and building stronger communities."

To take part in the consultation, which runs until August 26, 2018, visit