Private landlords will be legally required to become members of a redress scheme

by Property 118

11:36 AM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

Private landlords will be legally required to become members of a redress scheme

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Private landlords will be legally required to become members of a redress scheme

A new Housing Complaints Resolution Service has been announced for the entire housing market and for the first time ever, private landlords will be legally required to join a housing redress scheme. Click here to view the MHCLG release:

Private landlords will be legally required to become members of a redress scheme – with a fine of up to £5,000 if they fail to do so.

James Brokenshire, Communities Secretary, has announced an overhaul of the ‘broken housing complaints system’ with plans for a new housing complaints service for the entire housing market ensuring both homeowners and tenants know where to go when things go wrong.

Dissatisfied homeowners and tenants will have simple and quick access to help when things go wrong, thanks to new plans announced today (24 January 2019) by Communities Secretary Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP.

From broken boilers to cracks in the wall, the new Housing Complaints Resolution Service will potentially help millions by providing a straight-forward way of getting help when faced with unresolved disputes about problems with their home – such as repairs and maintenance.

Unlike other sectors, such as financial services, the housing market has several different complaints bodies, with homeowners and tenants having to navigate their way through a complicated and bureaucratic system just to work out where to register a grievance.

Establishing a single housing complaints service for all residents – no matter whether they rent or own their home – will prevent people from battling with their landlord or builder to resolve issues on their own and make it easier to claim compensation where it’s owed.

Communities Secretary Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP, said:

“Creating a housing market that works for everyone isn’t just about building homes – it’s about ensuring people can get the help they need when something goes wrong.

“But all too often the process can be confusing and overly bureaucratic, leaving many homeowners and tenants feeling like there is nowhere to go in the event of problems with their home.

“The proposals I have announced today will help ensure all residents are able to access help when they need it, so disputes can be resolved faster, and people can get compensation where it’s owed.”

Currently, the housing complaints system is confusing – there are multiple complaint bodies covering the housing market, and membership of redress schemes is compulsory for some tenures but not others.

For example, in the private rented sector, there is currently no obligation for landlords to register with a complaints system – leaving thousands of renters without any course for redress.

To combat this, the Communities Secretary has today announced that private landlords will be legally required to become members of a redress scheme – with a fine of up to £5,000 if they fail to do so.

And to protect the interests of home-owners who buy new build homes, government has also reiterated its commitment to establishing a New Homes Ombudsman which will champion home buyers, protect their interests and hold developers to account.

Legislation will be brought forward at the earliest possible opportunity to require all new developers to belong to the Ombudsman – giving homebuyers the confidence that when they get the keys to a new home they are getting the quality of build they expect.

Developers will also have to belong to the new body by 2021 if they wish to participate in the government’s landmark Help to Buy scheme.

The Housing Complaints Resolution Service will be developed with a new Redress Reform Working Group made up of representatives from across the sector, working with industry and consumers.

This is part of on-going work by the government to make the property market fairer and more transparent for everyone.

Further information

These measures form part of the government response to the consultation Strengthening consumer redress in the housing market, which ran from 18 February to 16 April 2018, and received over 1,200 responses.

The consultation looked at a range of issues including:

  • how the current complaints and redress landscape works
  • whether streamlining redress in housing could help improve delivery of services
  • how the ‘in-house’ complaints process and other practices and processes in redress could be improved
  • how any gaps in housing redress could be filled, with a particular focus on purchasers of new build homes and private rented sector tenants

The policy proposals in this document primarily relate to England. Where proposed legislation has scope outside England with regard to devolved matters, we will continue to engage and consult the devolved administrations to seek agreement.

Redress for social housing residents is being considered separately. The response to the social housing green paper and the call for evidence for the review of social housing regulation are due to be published in spring 2019.

The government announced the proposal to create a New Homes Ombudsman service in October 2018. This response indicates how that service will sit in the wider redress landscape and the next steps of its implementation.

The Housing Complaints Resolution Service will provide a single point of access to resolve complaints for housing consumers, when ‘in-house’ complaint processes have been exhausted, through the current schemes providing alternative dispute resolution, while preserving the expertise of existing providers.

UPDATE

Please see the related article linked below. We have sourced a discount code for 50% off membership of the Property Redress Scheme.

Cost to landlords to join a COMPULSORY Redress Scheme?


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Comments

CrocadileBoy

13:02 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

Maybe this new body could make it easier and quicker for landlords to remove problem tenants... not holding my breath though. We all know this will be another proposal/scheme that is there to solely benefit tenants, but one which they will ultimately pay for.

I think I will start sending a yearly letter to my tenants, like HMRC does to show where my tax is spent, showing the amounts and proportion of their rents which are paid to the government/ councils, and why their rents could be much lower without government interference.

steve p

13:21 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by AJ at 24/01/2019 - 12:46
I think the above will apply to the Private rented sector so yes... Will be interesting to see if you need to pay per property or per landlord. I hold properties in my own name and a company, although I can just get the company to manage my properties and pay one fee.

Whiteskifreak Surrey

13:59 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

It is all to do with controlling Landlords, obtain more info about them and held them responsible for every tiny thing tenant may dream of and does not get immediately. The idea nevertheless is not bad, but it should be a 'level playing field' for both LLs and TTs. I bet it is not going to be, it will be heavily biased against LLs, as always. They could start with those registered (theoretically all) having a substantial discount in Licence fees (yes, I know I dream here, would love to have all licences abolished overnight, but...)

Chris @ Possession Friend

15:52 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

You can bet that not being registered will be added to the exclusion from using Sec 21 ( whilst it still survives that is ) and that it won't cost £33 like in Wales.
National Licensing will be next,
I predict we'll shortly have a specialist Housing court, all geared to benefit Tenants who want to complain, with NO discernable benefits to landlords seeking Possession.
There just hasn't been ANY signal for over 5 years of any regard for PRS landlords. - so why would we expect any change in the Housing court ( would be happy to be proven wrong though 😉

Mark Alexander

17:13 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

UPDATE

Please see the related article linked below. We have sourced a discount code for 50% off membership of the Property Redress Scheme.

Cost to landlords to join a COMPULSORY Redress Scheme?

https://www.property118.com/cost-landlords-join-compulsory-redress-scheme/

Rod

17:25 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

I've already written to this Government Dep't, all do likewise!

Neil Patterson

18:50 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

Paul Shamplina, founder of Landlord Action and brand ambassador for Hamilton Fraser.

“For the first time ever, private landlords will be legally required to join a housing redress scheme. Personally, I think this is a really positive step, not only in boosting protection for millions of renters across the country but also for recognising landlording as the professional business that it should be.

It will encourage landlords to focus on customer service and building relationships, as well as the quality of their properties, help to professionalise the industry and provide a level playing field for landlords and tenants.”

Dylan Morris

19:38 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

Has anybody any idea how this will benefit or work for homeowners ?

So as a landlord I am forced to:
1) Join and pay for a local council selective licencing scheme.
2) Join and pay to be a member of the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) to comply with GDR.
3) Join and pay for this Redress Scheme.

Michael Barnes

21:57 PM, 24th January 2019
About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by steve p at 24/01/2019 - 13:21
It is my understanding that the proposal is that EVERY private landlord will be required to join, whether or not they use an agent.

steve p

9:31 AM, 25th January 2019
About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Michael Barnes at 24/01/2019 - 21:57
So basically ill have to pay twice, once for myself and once for the company.... Oh joy..

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