Reacting to recent reports that councils aren’t taking enough enforcement action against ‘rogue’ landlords, an announcement has been made about further funding.
Councils will be able to bid for funding to step up enforcement action against irresponsible landlords who make tenants’ lives a misery and to develop and test innovative ways to clamp down on squalid accommodation.
This is part of the government action to drive up standards in the private rented sector, saying that it is “ensuring millions of hard-working tenants get the homes they deserve and creating a housing market that works for everyone.”
Housing Minister, Heather Wheeler, MP said, “Everyone deserves to live in a home that is safe and secure, and it is vital we crack down on the small minority of landlords who are not giving their tenants this security.
“This funding will help further strengthen councils’ powers to tackle rogue landlords and ensure that poor-quality homes in their area are improved, making the housing market fairer for everyone.”
Local authorities already have strong powers to require landlords to make necessary improvements to a property and can use a range of measures, including fines and banning orders, to tackle rogue landlords.
The new funding will be used to support a range of projects that councils have said will help them to ramp up action against criminal landlords – for example, to build relationships with external organisations such as the emergency services, legal services and local housing advocates.
Councils may also decide to support tenants to take action against poor standards through rent repayment orders, or develop digital solutions, helping officers to report back and make decisions quicker.
The money will also be used to encourage councils to share best practice of enforcement action and examples of innovative approaches that are self-sustaining and can be easily adapted to other parts of the country.