Councils gain powers to fine rogue landlords up to £30k

10 Apr 17

Local authorities have been given powers to crack down on rogue landlords including the ability to issue fines of up to £30,000, in a bid to help renters.

Speaking about the raft of changes which came into affect on Thursday, housing and planning minister Gavin Barwell said: “These measures will give councils the additional powers they need to tackle poor-quality rental homes in their area.

“By driving out of business those rogue landlords that continue to flout the rules, we can raise standards, improve affordability and give tenants the protections they need.”

Councils can now impose fines of up to £30,000 – which they can retain for private sector housing enforcement purposes - as an alternative to prosecution for a range of housing offences.

They also have extended powers for rent repayment orders, which can be issued to penalise landlords managing or letting unlicensed properties.

In addition, local authorities now have access to tenancy deposit protection data which can help them identify rental properties in their area, and tackle rogue landlords through targeted enforcement and prevention work.

As the new rules came into force a housing consortium, due to launch in August, was announced – it will produce research on the housing challenges facing the UK.

The £7.5m Collaborative Centre for Housing Evidence research centre will bring together nine UK universities, the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, the Chartered Institute of Housing, the Royal Town Planning Institute and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

It will be independent of government and aim to “advance knowledge of the housing market, provide robust evidence to inform housing policy and practice across the UK”.

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