Tenants to benefit as increased powers to target rogue landlords agreedPublished Thursday, 1st March 2018
Private housing tenants will benefit after Rotherham Council agreed to strengthen its powers to tackle rogue landlords in the borough.
As part of its commitment to making the borough a safer place for all adults and children, the Council will now make use of tougher powers to tackle poor housing conditions.
Landlords who fail to ensure the safety of their tenants could be prosecuted or face a penalty through the civil courts.
Under the Housing and Planning Act 2016, important new tools and powers were made available to councils to help tackle poor housing conditions and associated issues.
Cllr Dominic Beck, Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “These new powers are a welcome addition to the measures we have already been taking to improve the quality of private rented housing in the borough.
“Our existing Selective Licensing Scheme has been successful in driving improvements in the areas it covers – Masbrough, Maltby South East, Dinnington and Eastwood.
“The new measures will strengthen our powers of enforcement across Rotherham - where tenants are being put in danger by a small minority of rogue landlords - and also enable us to impose civil financial penalties on those landlords who seek to avoid their responsibilities,” he added.
Under the new powers, landlords who fail to ensure the safety of their tenants could face a penalty ranging from £25 through to £30,000 per offence.
The Council will also use Rent Repayment Orders to recover money which was paid to the landlord through Housing Benefit or through the housing element of Universal Credit.
The changes were approved by the Council’s Cabinet and agreed by a meeting of the Full Council on Wednesday (February 28).
Private tenants in Rotherham can get updates and information from the Council by following the Rotherham Renters account on Twitter.