The Government is set to make a database of rogue landlords public, a spokesperson for Theresa May has told The Guardian this week.
The announcement comes following the publication of the results of a joint investigation by The Guardian and ITV earlier this week, which has found that since the Government’s rogue landlord database was launched six months ago in April, there have been no entries.
When the ‘rogue landlord database’ was first launched, information on the database was only available to local authorities.
Further information is yet to be released about when the database could become accessible to current and prospective tenants.
A Government spokesman quoted in The Guardian added:
“Our rogue landlord database has only been in place since April and has been warmly welcomed by councils as an important enforcement tool.
“As we have said, only offences committed from April this year can be included, and it can take several months to secure convictions. We are clear that we expect to see entries in the database from the new year. We also intend to make information in the database available to prospective and existing tenants.”
The database is updated by all local authorities in the country, apart from in London, where Sadiq Khan introduced a rogue landlord checker. This checker CAN be accessed by all Londoners, and has so far received over 1,000 entries.
More enforcement needed
As well as the news that the rogue landlord database will be made public, separately the Guardian has also found that 53 councils that have not prosecuted a single landlord in three years.
In response to the report on Tuesday, Chairman of the RLA Alan Ward said:
“Criminal landlords have no place in the rental market.
“Local authorities have a vast range of powers available to them to tackle and root out landlords who bring misery to their tenants.
“The problem is that while Westminster enacts the legislation it is dependent on the political will of councils to enforce it. Research by the RLA has shown that few councils are yet to make use of the civil penalties now available to them, while landlords are being faced with increased licensing costs and the criminals ignore the system.
“Meanwhile, public money from housing benefit is being given to rogue landlords without basic checks on the safety of the properties. This has to end.”