Tenants will be given the right to take legal action against landlords who offer properties that are not ‘fit for human habitation’, the secretary of state for housing Sajid Javid confirmed yesterday.
The move follows a proposal put forward in the Commons by Labour MP, Karen Buck, designed to protect tenants in both the social and private rented sectors.
Where a landlord fails to meet their obligations, tenants will be permitted to take direct action and take their landlords to court.
Housing Secretary Sajid Javid said: “Everyone deserves a decent and safe place to live. Councils already have wide-ranging powers to crack down on the minority of landlords who rent out unsafe and substandard accommodation.
“However, public safety is paramount and I am determined to do everything possible to protect tenants. That is why government will support new legislation that requires all landlords to ensure properties are safe and give tenants the right to take legal action if landlords fail in their duties.”
The government has already introduced a range of powers for local authorities enabling them to crack down on the minority of landlords who rent out unsafe or substandard accommodation.
This includes being able to fine failing landlords up to £30,000 and from April this year councils will also be able to issue banning orders to kick the worst offenders out of the business.