New legislation came into play yesterday (April 6th), providing local authorities with the power to crack down on rogue landlords, which will allow them to fine a landlord up to £30,000 for failure to comply with a housing improvement or overcrowding notice, failure to have the correct licence for a property and failure to comply with the Houses in Multiple Occupation management regulations.
In another endeavour to eradicate rogue landlords, the Government have also expanded the Rent Repayment Order, allowing local authorities or a tenant to claim back 12 months rent as a penalty for a wide range of offences which include; illegal eviction or harassment of occupiers, using violence to secure entry and failure to comply with a housing improvement notice or prohibition order.
In the 22 years that I have been involved in the lettings industry I have seen many changes to the legislation, the majority of which have helped to improve the standard of rented accommodation and has increased the protection of both the landlord and the tenant. It is unfortunate that there are still rogue landlords out there, who don’t operate within the law, it’s important for these to be flushed out, so in my mind, any measures that are introduced to help achieve this are most welcome.
As a proud member of the Association of Residential Letting Agents, we have a strict code to which we adhere, giving landlords and tenants peace of mind that their money and assets are protected. There are costs involved in being a member – Client Money Protection, membership of The Property Ombudsman scheme and regular auditing of client accounts, but all of these things are essential in order to offer a thorough, protected and high level of service. There will always be someone trying to offer “bargain service”, but in many cases, this won’t include the same level of protection, so we would urge all landlords and tenants to bear this in mind when using an agent. We adhere to a code of practice in order to protect all parties, peace of mind and value for money should always be considered in addition to any fees.
If letting out a property is something you have been considering, we would be delighted to offer our advice on the options available to you.
Call us on (01252) 514000, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.