New Report Calls For
National Ban On Rogue Landlords
A new parliamentary report entitled “Creating A Better Private Rented Sector” was published by MP’s from the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Friday 27th June 2014, in order to tackle the apparent problems faced by both landlords and tenants in the UK’s private rented sector (PRS).
The report suggests a full review of the PRS regulatory system to check that it is fit for purpose and the report makes the following recommendations:
- Nationwide banning orders for rogue landlords
- National licence for landlords
- Guide for tenants on renting a property
The report has been welcomed by UK landlord associations including the Residential Landlords Association (RLA), who say that the new report “highlights the need for better enforcement by local authorities of the wide range of powers they already have to enforce standards.”The RLA say that the report details practical solutions to the problems being faced in the UK private rented sector, including increasing fines under civil penalties and the issuing of banning orders to prevent rogue landlords from operating across the UK.
The RLA also require a clearer definition of what constitutes a “fit and proper” person to rent out properties, as they feel the wording is a little ambiguous.
The “Creating A Better Private Rented Sector” report proposes that the Government should examine the barriers preventing the use of a landlords contact details, that must be made available to tenants under current legislation as well as preventing the misuse of data held in statutory tenancy deposit schemes.
The report echoes recommendations stated by Housing Minister, Kris Hopkins reported on by Spotlight in March 2014 and suggests that landlord registration should be handed on to become the responsibility of local authorities rather than creating even more bureaucracy in order to control landlord registration.
The RLA objects to the report’s recommendations for annual electrical safety checks in private rented properties, as there is little evidence that such regular checks would achieve a notable improvement in tenant safety, even though portable electrical appliances have to be periodically tested at the expense of the property owner under current legislation.
RLA chairman Alan Ward said: “The APPG has successfully produced a detailed report that resists headline grabbing hysteria. The RLA has long called for a review of existing regulations, and we therefore welcome the calls for greater enforcement of existing legislation before reaching for yet more red tape that stifles much needed growth in the sector. While there are aspects of the report we do not fully agree with, we welcome the report’s recognition that the sector is coming up with pragmatic solutions to tackle the challenges highlighted in the report. We therefore call on all parties to respond in kind to the pragmatism shown in this report.”
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