Living Home Standard
The government has issued a consultation into further measures to increase protect tenants through increased licensing of shared accommodation and minimum room sizes. This consultation seeks to close a loophole whereby criminal landlords let out rooms to adults which are far too small for an adult to occupy.
No-one wants to see tenants inappropriately housed or in substandard accommodation and those who deliberately fail to meet their responsibilities deserve everything they get but do we need this additional legislation? There are already powers available to local authorities to address issues of overcrowding but the local authorities are unable to act unless the problem is notified to them either by a landlord, tenant or other concerned person. Anyone who feels that the accommodation they are renting from a landlord is too small should contact the local authority. Unfortunately due to high rents some tenants would appear to prefer to crowd in as any people as possible, any landlord whose property is overcrowded by the tenants should take appropriate action to ensure that the property only houses the correct number of people.
The national housing charity Shelter recently published their research on what they consider to be a ‘living home standard’ in which they claim that more than one in ten of those surveyed felt their homes did not have adequate space. (Click here for more information)
The report by Shelter does not explain how the English Housing Survey found that 82% of tenants in the private rented sector are satisfied with their accommodation, much higher than the percentage for the social housing sector.
The large amount of legislation affecting the private rented sector (over 400 pieces of legislation and regulation) means that landlords can easily miss something crucial and so become labelled as a ‘rogue’ despite their best intentions. Membership of a landlord association, whether local or national body can help to keep landlords up-to-date.
We should all applaud the work done by good landlords and encourage enforcement to remove the rogues and criminal elements from the sector.
This blog was provided by the Cornwall Residential Landlords Association