Private sector housing enforcement
The council ensures that private sector homes, both privately rented and owner-occupied, are of good quality and meet the current legal standards. Complaints of disrepair and housing safety issues are investigated.
A range of enforcement powers are available to improve poor housing conditions relating to severe disrepair and overcrowding. If your problems are associated with harassment or unlawful evictions please speak to our housing options service.
The Housing Act 2004 implemented a property assessment tool, the housing health and safety rating system. Under this system, properties assessed as having category 1 hazards, refer to homes where there is judged to be a likely risk to heath and safety of the current occupants. When the inspecting officer becomes aware of a hazard of this type, then they have a duty to take action. Where there are category 2 hazards, then there may be more discretion.
The type of action taken will be dependent on the risk, the occupancy and potential threat to visitors, and any effect on the locality. Before any course of action, we will seek to consult with your landlord, unless there is an imminent danger or the landlord cannot be contacted. We aim to work within a framework of our council enforcement policy.
Before any formal enforcement action, we seek to provide advice and assistance to landlords to ensure that they are aware of their rights and responsibilities. We can also provide advice and assistance to tenants who contact us about issues with their housing conditions.