Inquiry into whether councils have adequate powers to tackle ‘rogue landlords’

Inquiry into whether councils have adequate powers to tackle ‘rogue landlords’

8:51 AM, 13th October 2017, About 7 years ago 12

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The Communities and Local Government Committee has this week launched an inquiry into whether councils have adequate powers to tackle ‘rogue landlords’.

The brief of the inquiry into the Private Rental Sector (PRS) is detailed the committee below:

  • To examine the role of local authorities in the PRS focusing on the provision by councils of private rented accommodation and whether they have sufficient powers to deal with bad practices.
  • Consider barriers to intervention in the private rented sector, whether landlord licensing schemes are promoting higher quality accommodation and the effectiveness of complaint mechanism for tenants.

Chair of the Communities and Local Government Committee, Clive Betts MP, said: “With a big rise in the number of people renting over the last decade, there are real concerns about the ability of local authorities to protect tenants by tackling bad landlords and practices.

“Our inquiry will examine how local authorities can carry out enforcement work to deal with rogue landlords as well as looking at approaches used by councils to provide private rented accommodation in their areas.”

If you would like to contribute to the inquiry:

Submitting written evidence

The Committee is inviting written evidence in relation to the points below:

  • Do local authorities have the powers and capacity required to enforce standards in the private rented sector and deal with ‘rogue landlords’?
  • What are the main obstacles to effective intervention in the private rented sector?
  • How effective are landlord licensing schemes in promoting higher quality accommodation?
  • What approaches have local authorities taken to promote affordable private rented sector accommodation in their areas?
  • How effective are complaint mechanisms for tenants in the private rented sector?

The closing date for submissions is Friday 24 November 2017 at midday.

Further information

Click Here to see the full Commons Select Committee page for further information.

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terry sullivan

9:08 AM, 13th October 2017, About 7 years ago

we need an enquiry into the abuse of landlords by local govt--most of their employees are clueless. we also need to ensure that when a house full of gimmegrants is discovered then borders agency should attend immediately to detect illegals for immediate deportation.
we need an enquiry into why may downgraded border control when home sec. as this is often the cause of the 40 to a house scenario--has the landlord in Brent received his compensation from Brent and the grauniad for libel? i hope so

Robert M

9:23 AM, 13th October 2017, About 7 years ago

Councils already have massive powers to deal with rogue landlords, but there is nobody giving landlords the power to deal with rogue tenants! The legal process is a farce and takes many months, at huge cost. There is little or no effective enforcement powers available to landlords against the tenants for anti-social behaviour (or rent arrears if the person is on benefits or a low income). If landlords were given effective powers to deal with rogue tenants, then perhaps the landlords could afford to improve their properties more and thus achieve the government's presumed aim of improving housing standards.


11:25 AM, 13th October 2017, About 7 years ago

I agree with Robert Mellors. Councils have possibly too much power especially once licensed where they definitely abuse their power.
Further to the above there is no justice in the judicial system where Landlords are concerned as you will see below:
I recently tried evicting joint tenants using a section 8 notice where they were well over two months in arrears. At the first hearing they were represented by a barrister and solicitor where they said they did not receive the deposit documentation and claimed disrepair although, prior to that there were no complaints about disrepair.
The deposit certificate, prescribed information and "information for tenants" leaflet was all given to the tenants who signed copies saying they received them on a date which was well within the 30 day period.
Following a second hearing, the case ended up as being a litigation case where I believe in terms of costs the barrister and solicitors costs will have grown considerably where if I lose (although, I cannot see myself losing), will have to pay substantial costs.
On the other hand, the tenants are on legal aid so if I engaged a solicitor and won, the chances are that it would be highly unlikely that I would recoup the costs.
I could unfortunately lose on technicalities where I am no expert in presenting the case and I also have to pay an additional hearing fee of £545 where I already paid an application fee for possession of around £365.
The legal aid solicitors apparently get paid from public funds if they win or lose the case. This is obviously an extremely unfair system.
In virtually every way, I see the system being very unfair to landlords from the recent tax system to the licensing and the justice system

Martin Roberts

12:50 PM, 13th October 2017, About 7 years ago

Compulsory licensing will certainly involve all landlords paying a fee.

This will have to be recovered from tenants just like a person renting a car pays the vehicle excise duty.

Rogue landlords can already be charged with many offences so I don't see how this levy will help anyone. Oh, except local authorities.

Kathy Evans

17:00 PM, 13th October 2017, About 7 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Robert Mellors at 13/10/2017 - 09:23
And the Councils encourage rogue tenants to stay without paying rent - I assume because they don't want to have to rehouse them

Yvonne Francis

17:32 PM, 13th October 2017, About 7 years ago

I can't help wondering why this appeal for written evidence has been posted here. After all turkeys don't vote for Christmas.
As Robert says Council's have enormous powers anyway and however a good landlord one is trying to be, such powers have a knock on affect on everyone of us.

John Mcgowan

19:14 PM, 14th October 2017, About 7 years ago

Councils have more than enough powers to tackle rogue landlords. What councils don't do is act against rogue tenants who fail to pay their rents,utility bills and council tax. Furthermore they may setup cannabis factories in properties or cause substantial damage before disappearing and repeating this unlawful behaviour elsewhere. Some of these tenants have of course been referred to landlords by the councils themselves. There needs to be a balanced approach by an authorised organisation to protect tenants and landlords alike.

Michael Holmes

0:08 AM, 15th October 2017, About 7 years ago

Yes, it is amazing how the Government is still attacking Landlords even after the wretched fiscal onslaught perpetrated by Osborne and Carney with Section 24 and the removal of the wear and tear allowance. I thought this was supposed to be a Conservative administration, not a chronic Socialist one, which it obviously has become now.

Gary Dully

8:57 AM, 16th October 2017, About 7 years ago

I don’t think councils have thumbscrews, genital hammers or water boarding techniques allowed yet, so there might be a case for more powers.

Ian Narbeth

16:53 PM, 16th October 2017, About 7 years ago

It's obvious. The punishment for landlords should be five years in jail and/or an unlimited fine. What for, you may ask? Why, just think of another obstacle to put in landlords' paths and then apply a draconian penalty to it.

Do Council prosecute themselves or Housing Associations for their failings? What about the "rogue councils" who installed Grenfell Tower-type cladding? Who will prosecute them?

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