Tag Archives: landlords

The Independent View: Rooting out criminal landlords

Landlod and tenant License Some rights reserved by umjanedoanIn his recent article, Julian Huppert MP declared that “landlords should have to compete on quality not just on price.” The Residential Landlords Association agrees. The question is how to achieve this.

Many councils have chosen some form of licensing to identify the ‘rogues’ who over-crowd homes and rent sub-standard properties.

The problem with licensing schemes is they identify the good landlords who sign up but fail to find the crooks. Even Newham, the most pro-active borough in this respect, has failed to reach the hardcore of 20% of rogue landlords after a year’s intensive enforcement.

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged and | 7 Comments

Julian Huppert writes: Improving the private rented sector

Terraced housingThere are 9 million people in the private rented sector in the UK. Many of them get a rough deal from landlords who push the rules, and letting agents out to exploit them.

Letting agencies have been allowed to charge exorbitant fees to do the simplest, cheapest administrative tasks – sending an email, posting a letter or changing a name on the tenancy. According to Shelter, 1 in 7 people who use letting agents spend £500 on fees, that’s on top of rent and deposits!

Last Wednesday, I presented a Bill to …

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The 17th Tory policy Lib Dems have blocked: Clegg rejects Theresa May’s plans to impose new immigration regulations on private landlords

Perhaps the silliest proposal in a generally thread-bare Queen’s Speech in May was the Conservatives’ plan to ‘look busy’ on immigration.

Yes, the party that claims to want to cut back red-tape for small businesses decided to try and tie-up private landlords in it by imposing a legal duty on them check the immigration status of new tenants and lodgers. It’s an, erm, interesting approach to regulation, I guess: out-sourcing it to people who’ll have no way of validating the information they’re given.

However, the Tories’ grand plans have been scuppered thanks to the Lib Dems, as The Guardian …

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The Independent View: Landlord licensing will not stop the criminals

The National Landlords Association (NLA) is a membership organisation representing over 20,000 individuals and companies, letting privately rented residential property. The NLA provides advice to help landlords run their businesses for themselves and their tenants. Like anyone else, landlords like satisfied customers and repeat business.

The private-rented sector has grown from a low point of eight per cent of households in 1990 to over 17 per cent today, matching the social housing sector. This growth has accelerated in recent years, due to the combined effects of …

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged | 13 Comments

Opinion: Should we regulate all private landlords – over to you, conference

The party’s housing working group has looked at the laws around the private rented sector. We had a choice of whether we regulate: no private landlords, or some private landlords or all private landlords. The party’s housing working group rejected the deregulation option. But we didn’t reach agreement on whether we should regulate some landlords, targeting landlords with more vulnerable tenants, or regulate all 1 million private landlords. It will be for conference to decide.

Large houses in multiple occupation (HMO), e.g. student houses, have always been regulated because HMO tenants have always been seen to be at a greater risk of harm. The Housing Act 2004 increased the regulation introducing licensing which covers both the state of the property and the ability of the landlord to manage the property. The Housing Act 2004 also enabled councils to introduce targeted licensing (Selective or Additional licensing) but only in areas subject to anti-social behaviour or low housing demand.

Posted in Conference, News and Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 32 Comments

Battle of the emergency motions

Conference these days includes slots that are left blank when the agenda is published, and that can be filled later by topics that become evident at a later date.

The deadline for – well pretty much everything, actually, including emergency motions, amendments, appeals, questions and so on – was yesterday.

LDV is aware of two emergency motions that have been doing the rounds asking for support. Firstly there’s one insisting that social services remain accountable to local people through local councils. A government paper launched on the 14th July suggested the creation of a national care body to take some …

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