In a new press release from the DCLG and Housing Minister Brandon Lewis, the Government claims that new measures are to be introduced to tackle ‘rogue’ landlords ‘head on’. This relates to a new discussion paper outlining plans to improve standards of shared homes by extending mandatory licensing to smaller and medium sized properties.
The proposals intend to make it easier for local authorities to raise standards in houses used as shared homes by:
- making the rules apply to more shared homes, including those that are 1-2 storeys; current rules apply to homes of 3 storeys
- ensuring rules apply to poorly converted blocks of flats and flats above and below shops, which are often exempt
- setting a minimum size of rooms in line with existing overcrowding standards
In addition the government is reviewing the information requirements when applying for a licence in order to simplify and speed up the process.
The discussion paper is available to view at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/extending-mandatory-licensing-of-houses-in-multiple-occupation-and-related-reforms.
Responses are due by 11:45pm on 18th December 2015.
While the RLA would call these people criminals as opposed to rogues the Association welcomes steps to improve the sector.
Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said:
It is simply unacceptable that people are living in cramped, unsafe accommodation provided by landlords who are more interested in a quick profit than the safety or welfare of their tenants.
The actions of these rogue landlords are helping fuel illegal working, benefit fraud, and illegal immigration by creating a shadow housing market that carries dangers to people’s health as well as communities.
The government is determined to crack down on rogue landlords and these measures, alongside those in the Housing Bill, will further strengthen councils’ powers to tackle poor-quality privately rented homes in their area.