One protection tenants have is the right to a Rent Repayment Order if their landlord needs a licence but doesn’t have one. Throughout England, rented homes where 2 or more households (of 5 or more people in total) share a kitchen or bathroom must have a licence as a House in Multiple Occupation. Many councils licence other types of homes in addition to those covered by “mandatory” licensing. We estimate that 1 in 8 private renters in London live in a property without the correct license.
Most councils have a list of licensed properties on their website, but it’s often hidden away – some *cough* Hull *cough* even make you pay to see them! But it should be easy for any tenant to find out if a property needs a licence and if it has one.
That’s why we’ve been calling on councils and city regions to do this so today we are delighted that Sadiq Khan has taken up our call and has made it easy for Londoners to find out if their rented home needs a licence and check if it has one – his property licence checker can be found here.
Until councils and mayors in the rest of the country follow suit, it will continue to be inaccessible for those of us outside London to check if our landlord is legit. The more information private renters have about our homes, the more empowered we will be.
We continue to campaign for a national register of landlords – please sign our petition here.