New funding will help up to 65 councils tackle rogue landlords who let out substandard homes including the hated Beds In Sheds, says Communities Secretary Greg Clark.
The worst affected councils which have a large proportion of private rented stock in their areas and significant problems will be able to bid for a share of the fund to tackle rogue landlords, says Clark.
The fund specifically targets Beds In Sheds, often rented to vulnerable migrants by ruthless landlords who charge them extortionate rents to live in cramped conditions.
Councils who successfuly secure a slice of the funding can use the money to increase inspections of property, carry out raids, initiate more enforcement action and prosecutions and demolish sheds and buildings that are prohibited.
“Council-led efforts mean more than 3,000 landlords have faced enforcement action and even prosecution in the last two years” says Clark.
Additional measures being introduced by the government in the Housing and Planning Bill include seeking banning orders for the most prolific and serious rogue letting agents and rogue landlords, issuing penalty notices of up to £5,000 for breaches, creating a database of rogue landlords and letting agents, and applying a more stringent ‘fit and proper’ person test for landlords to help ensure that they have the skills to manage properties and a contact readily available to tenants.