12:23 PM, 8th February 2012, About 10 years ago 9
Time is running out for buy to let investors in Wales who wish to make their feelings known about proposals to set up a compulsory landlords register.
The date for responses to the Welsh Assembly Government ‘Meeting the Housing Challenge’ closes on February 14.
The government is planning a nationwide register and accreditation of landlords in a bid to raise housing standards in the private residential sector.
The report observes that the credit crunch and the unsettled economic climate are leading people to increasing reliance on the private rented sector for a place to live.
The Welsh government wants to ensure that private tenants have similar housing similar standards to people renting from social landlords.
Statistics show that Wales has around 1.3 million homes and estimates 14% are private rentals, 16% are social housing and the rest privately owned. That adds up to around 182,000 private rented homes.
Housing analysts estimate the country needs around 14,000 new homes a year, but only 5,500 were built in 2010-11.
The government also sees part of the success of any housing initiative includes unlocking access to the 22,000 empty homes Wales.
“The private rented sector is an increasingly important part of the housing scene. But the quality of accommodation and the practice of landlords ranges from very good to very poor,” says the report.
“We must take our positive engagement with private landlords to a wholly new level, particularly those, often the worst landlords, who are not engaged in current efforts to improve the sector.
“In addition to committing to landlord registration and training and the regulation of letting/management agencies, we should take further steps to ensure growth and improve quality in the sector.”
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