Plymouth is cracking down on rogue landlords.
Over 20,000 city households are set to benefit from a new Housing Enforcement Policy that supports raising standards in the rented accommodation.
The policy, which will be considered by the City Council’s Cabinet on 13 November, sets out the clear enforcement consequences that the Council is be able to bring against landlords who do not meet their legal responsibilities to their tenants.
In some cases, landlords who breach the policy can end up with fines of up to £30,000.
It is hoped that the long term effect will be a vast improvement to the private rental sector in Plymouth, resulting in better, well-maintained homes for renters.
Councillor Chris Penberthy, Cabinet member for Housing and Cooperative Development, said: “I am very pleased to be able to present this new policy to my Cabinet colleagues.
“We promised that we would toughen up enforcement of housing in the private rented sector to drive up standards for renters and this policy does exactly that.
“This is about encouraging those who act in a responsible and fair manner, whilst wheedling out, taking action and eradicating the bad apples.
“It is important that private renters can see that the Council takes their welfare and rights very seriously. We will not hesitate to take action against rogue landlords.
“I encourage any tenant with a bad landlord to contact our Housing Enforcement Team on firstname.lastname@example.org”
The Housing Enforcement Policy sets out the legal requirements, policies, and principles that the Council will follow when enforcing private sector housing legislation.
The policy also acts as a toolbox of policies and enforcement approaches, one of which is the Civil Penalties Policy.
This policy sets out where the Council will issue civil penalties as an alternative to prosecution, how the fine levels will be determined and some worked examples of how decisions will be made.
This will support raising the profile and demonstrating the transparency in enforcement in the private rented sector; support increased public confidence in the quality and management of the sector; and, lead to safer and healthier private housing.