Councils are now able to impose heavy fines on rogue landlords as an alternative to prosecution, housing minister says.
Gavin Barwell today announced local authorities would have the power to issue fines of up to £30,000 for a range of housing offences as part of a push to improve the private rental sector.
First announced in the Government’s housing white paper, the new measures also mean councils will be able to retain all of the income for private sector housing enforcement purposes.
Rent repayment orders, which can be issued to penalise landlords managing or letting unlicensed properties, have also been extended to cover a wider range of situations.
These include the illegal evictions or harassment of the occupiers of a property, using violence to secure entry and the breach of a banning order.
The housing minister also announced that councils would be given access to tenancy deposit protection data, which will help them identify rental properties in their area.
The Government claims this will help authorities target rogue landlords.
‘These measures will give councils the additional powers they need to tackle poor-quality rental homes in their area,’ said Mr Barwell.
‘By driving out of business those rogue landlords that continue to flout the rules, we can raise standards, improve affordability and give tenants the protections they need.’