Councils must prosecute rogue landlords

Nia Williams

September 9, 2010

A new investigation by the housing charity Shelter found that a “small but dangerous” group of landlords are bringing the whole private-rented sector into disrepute. It goes on to say that: “…the damage that rogue landlords cause to the lives of often vulnerable tenants is enormous and can spread to the wider neighbourhood, with rundown properties blighting communities”.

The NLA is calling on local authorities to give enforcement a higher priority and deal firmly with rogue landlords who choose to exploit their tenants.

David Salusbury, chairman, NLA, in calling for further action by councils, said: “We roundly condemn the worst excesses in the private-rented sector where a small minority of landlords choose to exploit their tenants by offering sub-standard property which can endanger lives. This is unacceptable and local authorities must act.

“We agree with Shelter that most private landlords are responsible and honest in how they deal with their tenants and look after the properties. But where landlords wilfully ignore the rules and regulations put in place to protect tenants, landlords should expect severe penalties.

“Local authorities simply must do better by adopting a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to those landlords who wilfully break the law. If this rogue element within the sector goes unchallenged, then reputable landlords are tarnished and the image of the private-rented sector is damaged.”

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