Citizens Advice calling for National Housing Body

by Property 118

15:21 PM, 26th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

Citizens Advice calling for National Housing Body

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Citizens Advice calling for National Housing Body

Citizens Advice has conducted a survey into the PRS and concluded renters do not receive the same level of protection as in other essential consumer markets. Click Here to view the full survey.

Therefore they are calling for a ‘National Housing Body’ to set consistent standards, providing more protection for tenants and make it easier for landlords to do their jobs. The proposed new body could be included in an existing or brand new independent institution.

However, it is proposed the focus for the body should be on:

  • Setting the right standards: it could implement measures to standardise and clarify standards for landlords. For example, it could develop a simplified code of practice, or standardise ‘fit and proper person’ tests. Using membership of the new landlord redress scheme, the body could develop a register of landlords and use it to regularly communicate with landlords on new and upcoming regulation. This would make it easier for landlords and tenants to know exactly where they stand.
  • Create consistent expectations and requirements
  • Proactive ongoing monitoring: a national body should proactively enforce rules.​ ​This will take the onus away from tenants to pursue enforcement actions and make it easier to access redress.
  • Supporting landlords to meet their obligations: this body should be a resource for landlords to turn to to answer questions, and provide feedback guidance on regulation. This way, landlords will find it easier to know what their obligations are and follow them – providing a better standard of service for tenants.

The survey found:

  • 22% of tenants experiencing disrepair end up spending their own time or money fixing the problem.
  • 9 in 10 tenants don’t know whether a responsibility is theirs or their landlord’s.
  • 1 in 4 landlords were not able to correctly identify any of the potential outcomes of failing to meet their obligations towards tenants.
  • 1 in 3 landlords find it difficult to keep up with rules and regulations.
  • 75% of landlords agree that having a single national body responsible for standards would make their job easier

RLA policy director, David Smith, said:

“There are already well over 150 laws containing 400 regulations affecting the private rented sector. The powers are already there for councils to tackle and root out criminal landlords who cause misery for their tenants.

“What is lacking are both the will and the resources to properly use them. We fail to see how establishing a new body of this kind will help to address this.”



Comments

Paul Essex

18:38 PM, 26th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

By "supporting landlords" I assume they mean threatening us with fines!

Mick Roberts

7:52 AM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

So they acknowledging 78% of tenants don't have a problem. But now they & their Landlords has to pay for increased costs & time to pay for the minority 22%.

In one way, ONE ONE big body might be sensible if it got rid of all the other little no knowledge bodies like Selective Licensing etc.

And if this BIG body had common sense & had some Landlords & tenants on it, they might then see Ooh this Clause 24 Tax rule where you not allowed to deduct your expenses & pay profit on thin air, this is hurting tenants.

And Ooh this direct payment by Universal Credit is causing thousands to be made homeless, let's get rid of that too.

Ooh, the Council Homeless department isn't asking Landlords AFTER the eviction why they evicted, let's bring that in too so we know why Landlords are evicting instead of just trusting the tenant is telling the truth.

And Ooh Ooh Ooh there will be umpteen things they find, that if we stopped bashing the Landlord, tenants will be better off, more people will invest in houses, competition will increase, tenants will have a choice & move if the house ain't good enough.

Problem solved. Does it need this big body or shall we just use my words above & save millions?

Jim Fox

7:58 AM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

This summary makes interesting reading.
Nowhere do I see any reference to the proposed National Housing Body being a conduit for Landlords to obtain redress against 'tenants from hell'?
Does CAB only feel this new body should act for tenants against landlords, and not be a 2 way street?

Gromit

10:48 AM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

Just another NGO trying to make a few headlines, to justify their existence and ongoing Government funding.

Frederick Morrow-Ahmed

12:32 PM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

Well now, CAB couldn't be left behind, could they? They had to get their two bits in. Seems to be a competition between the likes of Shelter, CAB, the media to tell the world how bad things are and what needs to be done to put it right. They obviously haven't heard the yankee saying "if it ain't broke, don't fix it"!

Everything was going swimmingly fine with Mrs Thatcher's Housing Act 1988 until friend Blair had to come and wreck it all with his Housing Act 2004. And it has been downhill ever since.

What these self-interested busybodies don't realise is that the greatest weapon tenants have is CHOICE. The ability to vote with their feet. Take away choice and you take away that power for tenants.

The greatest regulator is the market. Leave the rest to caveat emptor. Yes, safety needs to be regulated, but that's all.

Frederick Morrow-Ahmed

12:45 PM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Frederick Morrow-Ahmed at 27/06/2019 - 12:32
And I forgot to add into that mix, self-interested devious politicians.

Mick Roberts

12:48 PM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Frederick Morrow-Ahmed at 27/06/2019 - 12:32
Perfect words:

Take away choice and you take away that power for tenants.

Universal Credit has took away choice.
As has Selective Licensing.
As has Clause 24.

And all the other draconian rules.

Rod

12:54 PM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

My T scarpered owing £1000 rent £2000 energy bill and more. Funny how that side is conveniently ignored! LLs should go to CAB asking how to pay their mortgage!

Paul Essex

13:46 PM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

I have heard that CAB actually refuse to talk to landlords - can anyone confirm this?

Luke P

15:27 PM, 27th June 2019
About 4 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Paul Essex at 27/06/2019 - 13:46
Not only have they refused to help LLs, they have actively directed them to my office as 'someone who is on landlords' side'...

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