The Housing and Planning Bill returns to the House of Commons tomorrow when the remaining stages of the legislation resume after the Christmas parliamentary recess.
Just before the festive break, the bill’s committee concluded its detailed analysis of the measures contained in the proposed legislation; now it returns to the full House of Commons for all MPs to discuss it.
In Christmas week a well-informed leak in the Sun newspaper appeared to confirm that the proposals include:
- new fines of up to £30,000 for landlords who let out filthy or unsafe homes, particularly targeting those who fail to take action on overcrowding, hazardous conditions, poor sanitation, electrical faults, damp and vermin infestation;
- the ability of councils to issue civil penalty notice on offenders which, in the words of the Sun, will “provide an instant deterrent for criminal operators”;
- the banning of agents and landlords who are considered ‘serial offenders’;
- the creation of a database of rogue agents and landlords, which can be accessed by local authorities.
Housing Minister Brandon Lewis told the Sun: “The private rental sector is still afflicted by too many rogues who rent dangerous, dirty and overcrowded properties without a thought for the welfare of their tenants. We are determined to crack down.”