In 2000 the Government implemented a measure of general housing conditions known as the Decent Homes standard.
The Government set the standards and targets for local authorities which although not directly charging Landlords as being responsible to upgrade their properties to reach these standards, has by its implications a major impact on those who rent to households which are classed as vulnerable [receiving housing allowances and other benefits after being means tested]. All properties supplied by the Authorities to these households have to reach the Decent Homes standards.
To further explain the implications for Landlords - is that a high percentage of Councils use the private rented sector to house people who are on benefits. At present the private rented sector has by far the lowest percentage of decent homes in all sectors.
The Government in the Decent Homes standard stated that this grade [which will be fully explained below] of dwelling should be supplied to this section of the community by the rented sector:
BY 2006 65%
BY 2010 70%
BY 2020 75%
1) The property must meet with all of the latest statutory minimum standards for housing.
Under the Housing Health and Safety Rating system, the dwelling should not contain any Category 1 hazards within its premises or surrounding attached areas.
2) The property it is in a good state of repair.
It will not pass the correct standards if ‘one or more’ of the most important parts of the building or ‘key’ components have sufficiently aged and need to be replaced or need to undergo significant repairs. Likewise the same applies for ‘two or more’ key parts of the building structure, which are sub standard through wear and tear and need to be replaced or to undergo major repairs.
3) The property must be fitted with an acceptable range of modern facilities and services.
If the property does not contain three or more of the following facilities then it will fail to meet the requirements.
(i) The bathroom must be appropriately located with a lavatory.
(ii) The bathroom must be no older than 30 years.
(iii) The kitchen must have adequate space and layout.
(iv) The kitchen must not be any older than 20 years.
(v) Common areas of blocks of flats must be of an adequate size and layout.
(vi) The property must have effective insulation and efficient heating; new Green standards of thermal insulation are being introduced and may also mean paying higher local taxes if standards are not met.
(vii) There must be a good level of external noise insulation.
Immigration Act revised 2016 should a landlord or letting agent fail to ensure ALL tenants/occupiers have a righto reside for the duration of the tenancy then they may be fined £3000 for each breach. The Secretary of State may instruct the landlord to remove such persons without the need of a court order by way of reasonable force
Labour market enforcement - restriction on illegal migrants to work. A labour market enforcement undertaking (an “LME undertaking”) is an undertaking by the person giving it (the “subject”) to comply with any prohibitions, restrictions and requirements set out in the undertaking
Under section 42 of the County Courts Act 1984 it is possible for the Court to transfer a matter from the County Court to the High Court for enforcement but leave (permission) of the Court is required first. The transfer time varies from court to court and can take up to 28 days, but normally takes far less. An application to seek permission can be made either at the time of making the possession claim or after possession has been ordered.