Government Health and Safety review for PRS

by Property 118

11:14 AM, 29th October 2018
About 2 weeks ago

Government Health and Safety review for PRS

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Government Health and Safety review for PRS

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government have issued a press release, click here, announcing that it will instigate a Health and Safety review of the PRS:

Renters are to receive greater protection thanks to plans announced by Housing Minister Heather Wheeler MP which will overhaul health and safety standards for rental accommodation – helping to keep safe the minority of private tenants who currently live in unsatisfactory conditions.

While the vast majority of landlords are responsible owners who take great pride in the properties they lease to their tenants, some private renters live in sub-standard homes with problems such as inadequate heating and damp.

Under current rules, councils are required to ensure rental properties in their area meet important safety standards using the Housing Health and Safety Rating System and are able to force criminal landlords to take action where tenants are languishing in unsafe accommodation.

Yet the system hasn’t been updated in over 12 years, and a new review of the system will consider whether it should be updated and if so, to what extent. The review will also look at whether to introduce minimum standards for common health and safety problems in rental accommodation in order to keep renters safe.

Today’s measures build on government action to drive up standards in the rental sector – making sure tenants are living in safe and secure properties; cracking down on the small minority of landlords that are renting out unsafe and substandard accommodation; and ensuring the housing market works for everyone.

Housing Minister Heather Wheeler MP said:

“Everyone has a right to feel safe and secure in their own home. These reviews will allow us to revisit the current systems for health and safety ratings and carbon monoxide alarms to ensure that both are fit for purpose and meeting the needs of tenants. By looking again at these rules, we can make sure that they are working as they should to keep people safe and give them peace of mind in their homes.”

Ministers have also outlined further detail of the review into carbon monoxide alarm requirements in the home, to help ensure people remain safe from this silent killer.

There are currently around 8 million carbon monoxide alarms in homes across England, with current rules stating that alarms must be fitted in privately rented homes with solid fuel appliances and when solid fuel stoves and boilers are installed.

The review will judge whether legislation goes far enough in keeping people safe from the risks of carbon monoxide in their homes, and whether there should be a blanket requirement to install alarms for other methods of heating, including gas and oil, and to social housing.

Ministers will also consider new research including technological improvements and the falling costs of carbon monoxide alarms and whether this supports a case to extend requirements.

The news demonstrates ongoing government work to support people to feel safe and secure in their home.

Ministers have also introduced tough new powers for councils to tackle the small minority of rogue landlords who rent out overcrowded properties, including fines of up to £30,000 for those landlords who do not comply.

The Tenant Fees Bill, currently making its way through Parliament, will also bring an end to unnecessary, costly fees imposed by landlords or property agents – stopping tenants being charged hundreds of pounds for minor fixes to their homes and putting cash back in their pockets.

Together, the measures will make sure the housing market works for everyone by making renting fair and more transparent for all.

Further information

The Housing health and safety rating system is used by local authorities to assess health and safety in residential properties – this includes both private rental properties and council/housing association properties.



Comments

Denise G

10:11 AM, 30th October 2018
About 2 weeks ago

"While the vast majority of landlords are responsible owners who take great pride in the properties they lease to their tenants, some private renters live in sub-standard homes with problems such as inadequate heating and damp."
Is this sentence from the article a direct quote from the government?? - because if it is we and they should be singing it from the rooftops

silversurfer2017

11:12 AM, 30th October 2018
About 2 weeks ago

I can see regular safety inspections coming and guess who will be paying for them. 'Making sure the housing market works for everyone' (apart from landlords of course)

David Price

13:28 PM, 30th October 2018
About 2 weeks ago

We should be campaigning for all rules and regulations to apply to every landlord including, perhaps especially, social and Local Authority landlords. This also goes for direct payment under Universal Credit.

Larry Sweeney

17:22 PM, 30th October 2018
About 2 weeks ago

That is an excellent point David and exactly what the New Alliance will be doing. The new homes fit for habitation bill is most welcome because it creates a level playing field (as Councils love to say). The Alliance will examine licensing schemes in different areas and if we keep recruiting members as we have been doing ,we will with media campaigns educate council tenants about suing local authorities for forcing tenants to live in substandard conditions. No more bullying Landlords. It would appear David that we are the only landlord organisation prepared to fight tooth and nail against the hysterical hype which labels every landlord a criminal. When I use the word criminal Grenfell springs to mind. No private landlord ever endangered lives on this scale. Councils beef up your budgets, get your housing stock up to scratch. To join us info@landlordsalliance.co.uk.

Denise G

18:01 PM, 30th October 2018
About 2 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Denise G at 30/10/2018 - 10:11
My point actually was that we should be widely publicising their comment if the government are FINALLY acknowledging that "the vast majority of landlords are responsible owners who take great pride in the properties they lease to their tenants"

Annie Landlord

9:55 AM, 31st October 2018
About 2 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Denise G at 30/10/2018 - 18:01
Exactly Denise! One way we could get this message out would be for all landlords reading the thread to open the link to the press release and forward it to their MP, local council leader and local paper, with a short note to say how relieved we are that the government has finally acknowledged that only a small minority of landlords are 'rogue'.


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