Section: Private Sector Housing

Review reveals millions of private housing tenants are being failed

Posted 10.09.18
University of York: Article link

Millions of private housing tenants have been failed over the past decade through poor policy-making and a lack of strategy, a major review carried out by the University of York has concluded.

The authors of the review - The Evolving Private Rented Sector: its Contribution and Potential - suggest the introduction of a 'Property MOT', operating in a similar way to that which exists for cars, so that all properties let for residential purposes would be required to undergo an annual standardised inspection.

The main findings in the review include:

The review concludes that no government has been clear on the function of renting within the housing market and as a result, interventions have been piecemeal and poorly targeted.

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Government announces further protections for tenants against unfair letting fees

Posted 06.09.18
GOV.UK: Article link

Tenants in the private rented sector will no longer be forced to pay excessive fees for minor damages, as the government continues to crackdown on unfair letting fees.

The move, announced as part of the Tenant Fees Bill, is a further measure to bring an end to costly fees imposed by a landlord or agent.

Under the new default fee provision, a landlord or agent will only be able to recover reasonable incurred costs, and must provide evidence of these costs to the tenant before they can impose any charges.

This will put a stop, for example, to tenants being charged hundreds of pounds for a damaged item that actually only costs a few pounds to replace - such as £60 to replace smoke alarms which the local council would have replaced for free.

Other amendments to the Bill brought forward by the government include taking steps to ensure tenants get their money back quickly by reducing the time frame that landlords and agents must pay back any fees that they have unlawfully charged.


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Reporting on September 2018

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