Is Landlords Property Management Non-existent?

Citizens Advice report high numbers of Tenants are living dangerously!

Times have drastically changed with real estate in this country and we are now steadfast in generation rent. It is unlikely, certainly in the near future, that 18 to 30 year olds will be able to make the leap onto the property ladder, thanks to rising property prices.

With so many people renting in England, why then aren’t the landlord’s legal responsibilities more stringent to protect tenants? Shouldn’t landlords property management be providing long-term security in a well maintained, safe property?

I was absolutely outraged this week when I learnt from the Guardian that a Citizens Advice report stated that over 500,000 children are living in dangerous privately rented homes. That was shocking enough, and then I go on to read that this equates to:

  • 740,000 households living in dangerous rented homes
  • In the last 12 months 80,000 people have used Citizens Advice with problems regarding their privately rented home.

So what are the hazards presented by these landlords from hell?

The  risks to health reported are defined as category 1 hazards which include:

  • Risk of falls
  • Excessive cold
  • Rat infestations
  • Severe damp
  • Explosion risks

With the figures of families living and raising children in the private rental sector three times higher than 10 years ago, what is being done to protect tenants against rogue landlords?

Suggested Changes to a Landlord’s Legal Responsibilities

Citizens Advice are asking that:

  • Councils implement a licensing system that will ensure that tenants are aware of what a good landlord’s legal responsibilities are. And, to ensure that they meet the quality of housing and services that the area needs.
  • A national register of landlords is put into place so ensure that landlords from hell cannot move around the country to avoid legal action. This would also ensure that a landlord’s guide to renting and updates to landlord’s regulations could be communicated effectively.
  • When a property is deemed dangerous and not fit for habitation the tenants should be entitled to a refund of their rent.

This would be a start to putting right what can only be described as an appalling housing crises. A situation I simply cannot believe even exists in the year 2015. Perhaps the government should never have sold off so many of the council properties back in the 1970’s and 80’s.

Advice to Tenants

To avoid falling prey to a landlord from hell head straight to a reputable letting agent. Many can be found on the high street and offer comprehensive tenant services, advice and protection. Belvoir letting agents in Southampton offer a tenant’s guide to renting a property, for example, which instills confidence that they care not only about reputable landlords but looking out for their tenants too.

Make sure you do your homework and head to a recommended or highly decorated letting agent to protect both your family and your money.

Do your have landlord horror stories to share? Let us know in the comments.


About the Author

Jackie Wakefield – Learned Blogger Find Jackie on Google +

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