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Private Rented Housing: Standards

Question for Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

UIN 109707, tabled on 30 October 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether he plans to introduce minimum property standards to require landlords to register and prove their property is in an acceptable condition.

Answered on

9 November 2020

We are exploring the introduction of minimum standards for privately rented properties as part of our comprehensive review of the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS), the tool used by local authorities to assess standards in the private rented sector.

This review has begun and is looking into new minimum standards for all hazards, including fire, damp and excess cold. This will make the system easier to understand for landlords and tenants, correct the disconnect between the HHSRS and other legislative standards, and facilitate the effective enforcement of housing standards by local authorities.

Regarding a requirement for landlords to register, we want to strike the right balance between supporting good landlords and tackling criminals. In April 2018, using powers under the Housing and Planning Act 2016, we introduced a national database of rogue landlords and letting agents for local authorities to target the worst offenders and prevent them from operating, to better protect tenants. Our consultation on how to open up and extend information on the database to tenants closed on 12 October 2019 and we will respond in due course.