Millions of Brits fear they will lose their homes after a ban on bailiff evictions ends on Monday.
New research found that 1.8 million adults – 22 per cent of private renters – are worried they could soon be forced out at short notice.
And homelessness charity Shelter said 3.2 million – more than four in 10 private renters – worry about finding a new home in the future.
The ban was introduced as an emergency measure at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, but in November last year Shelter said 445,000 private renters were in arrears or had been threatened with eviction in the past month.
It has sparked calls for the government to provide financial support for those struggling to keep their homes.
From June 1 notice periods will be set to four months, but this will be halved in September.
Shelter chief executive Polly Neate said: “The lifting of the eviction ban signals the beginning of the end for many renters facing homelessness. Thousands of people will wake up on the 1 st of June knowing they’ll soon be kicked out of their home, with nowhere to go.
“The ban has been a lifeline for private renters who have weathered job losses, falling incomes and rising debts in this pandemic. But what happens now?
“Longer notice periods, while they last, will give some worried renters valuable time. But come September, anyone facing eviction will have just weeks to find somewhere else to live.
“The government needs to do more to stem the tide of rising evictions. It cannot waiver from delivering a Renters’ Reform Bill that scraps Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions altogether. And in the meantime, it must offer renters with crippling Covid-arrears a package of financial aid.”
Tory Housing Minister Christopher Pincher previously said: “As Covid restrictions are eased in line with the roadmap out of lockdown, we will ensure tenants continue to be supported with longer notice periods, while also balancing the need for landlords to access justice.
“Crucial financial support also remains in place including the furlough scheme and uplift to Universal Credit.”