When a tenant has a landlord who refuses to make repairs to the property, the local council should be their next port of call. Unfortunately, local council environmental health teams are woefully under-resourced and many cases of unsafe housing slip through the net – there are an estimated 16% physically unsafe privately rented homes.
Where the council doesn’t take action, it is technically possible for the tenant to take their landlord to court – but only if their rent is below £80 – a year. There is a requirement for landlords to ensure that homes are fit for human habitation but it’s limited to rent levels last set in 1957.
Karen Buck MP is setting out today to change that.