Despite the amount of landlords in the UK who do provide satisfactory homes for their tenants, a minority still continue to break the law and offer unsafe housing to young families and others vulnerable to exploitation.
The new funding will assist councils to step up enforcement action against these landlords and will go towards developing more methods to clamp down on inadequate accommodation.
Housing Minister, Heather Wheeler, MP said: “Everyone deserves to live in a home that is safe and secure, and it is vital we crack down on the small minority of landlords who are not giving their tenants this security.
“This funding will help further strengthen councils’ powers to tackle rogue landlords and ensure that poor-quality homes in their area are improved, making the housing market fairer for everyone.”
Local councils and authorities already have the power to issue fines and banning orders to deter landlords from passing up on their responsibilities.
However, the new funding will go further and will support a range of projects that councils have already said will help them.
These include building relationships with external organisations such as the emergency services, legal services and local housing advocates.
The money will also be used to encourage councils to share best practice of enforcement action and examples of innovative approaches that are self-sustaining and can be easily adapted to other parts of the country.
Did you know…
There are more than 4.5 million households in the UK’s private rental sector, of which 82% of renters are happy with their home.
However, the fund will target those living in sub par housing and will help local authorities tackle the challenges caused by rogue landlords which make it difficult to improve standards.
The funding will go towards improving:
- the need for better information – on housing stock and on rogue landlords and agents operating in their areas
- data sharing between authorities and agencies – identifying and bringing together different data sets to enable better enforcement targeting
- internal ‘ways of working’ – improving housing-specific legal expertise, in-house communication between teams, and tools and strategies to effectively implement policy
- innovative software – for enforcement officers to record their findings, gather evidence and streamline the enforcement process