Rogue landlords face penalties up to £30k from April
The Government have confirmed that new measures to crack down on rogue landlords will come into force on 6 April this year.
The new measures to be implemented under the Housing and Planning Act include powers to prosecute and impose significant fines or issue civil notices with penalties of up to £30,000. The new measures effectively mean that income raised from these penalties will be ring-fenced for further enforcement activity.
Our Chief Executive at ARLA David Cox commented:
"We have long called for greater enforcement activity to end poor housing provision. While we’re pleased that the government have been persuaded by our arguments, the responsibility now falls to local authorities to actively use the tools at their disposal to raise standards."
Local Authorities will also be able to receive details from deposit protection schemes to build a picture of the rental market in their area. We hope this will reduce the number of local authority licensing schemes which are seen by many as having been brought in to try to map the private rented sector within their locality.”
Now I have to say I don’t think we have many Landlords locally who will fall foul of these new regulations however it does show how Government is continuing to try to improve the quality of the private rented sector.
On another matter; many landlords think buying white goods with a warranty is wise and in many cases it is, but let me relate this story to you. The fridge failed with a broken compressor and our Landlord had a 2 year warranty that had been provided by a well known and most respected national retailer. The help line was called and a maintenance visit was booked at their earliest time which was 4 days away. It was agreed the engineer would call our office 30 minutes before his arrival so we could meet him at the property, you have guessed it, they didn’t call and a note was put through the letter box. We rang the help line again, they apologised and a further booking made for the following week and again confirmation we would be called 30 minutes before attending. On the morning of the appointment we rang the call centre just to confirm we would get that call this time and hey presto we did receive it and met the engineer at the property who recommended the fridge was repairable as it was under 2 years old but suggested the “well respected company” would probably replace it, oh and by the way his supervisor always took off the maintenance order the request to phone 30 mins before attending! It seems they are happy to attend a property and just leave a card. This matter started the first week in March and is still not resolved as the Landlord is still arguing with the supplier and waiting to be called back. Fortunately for the tenant Shipmans were able to provide the tenant with a fridge whilst the saga progresses. I therefore advise you to check very carefully the small print in your warranty documents.
This article was featured in the Rental Properties section of the EDP on Friday the 24th of March