Help with poor housing conditions

We have a range of enforcement powers to improve poor housing conditions relating to severe disrepair, housing safety issues and overcrowding. If your problems are associated with harassment or unlawful evictions please contact us to speak to our housing options service.

If you are a tenant with concerns about the condition of your home, you should contact your landlord or letting agent in the first instance.

You can also contact us for advice.

Housing health and safety rating system

The Housing Act 2004 included a property assessment tool called the housing health and safety rating system (HHSRS).

Where a report is received regarding poor housing conditions we use the HHSRS to assess the risk and condition of residential properties. It is a fundamental part of the Decent Homes Standard and an important procedure used to deal with bad conditions in homes.

The system includes 29 categories, grading the severity for each hazard. Properties assessed as having Category One hazards pose a high risk to the health and safety of the current occupants. When the inspecting officer becomes aware of a hazard of this type, they have a duty to take action.

Where there are Category Two hazards, there may be more discretion.

What will we do?

The type of action we will take depends on:

  • the level of risk
  • the occupancy
  • potential threat to visitors
  • any effect on the local area

The action we take will depend on the degree of risk and can vary from no action, to written advice, legal notice or prohibition of occupation.

Before taking action in line with our Council enforcement policy, we’ll try to consult with your landlord, unless there is an imminent danger or the landlord cannot be contacted.