OCT 2009 Julie Rugg and David Rhodes from the Centre for Housing Policy at York University headed the review and have now published their findings
Introducing a light touch licensing system for landlords and mandatory regulation for letting agencies. The 2004 Housing Act did implement legislation with regard a person being "fit and proper" such an extension of this licensing may see an individual losing their right to manage or Let property. Such a scheme would impose a mandatory licence with a permit fee and act like a driving licence - with points being deducted. At present ALL landlords in Scotland require a licence.
Introducing a new independent complaints and redress procedure for consumers, to help end long drawn out disputes. This would be financed by licence fees.
Tax changes to encourage good landlords to grow, including changes to stamp duty to encourage them to buy more properties. The report does highlight the need for the Government to encourage landlords to grow the business of letting and for landlords to consider it as a business. Also in favour of tax relief on improvements to provide incentive to modernise property.
Looking at ways for the PRS to be more accommodating towards households on lower incomes, including considering more support for landlords prepared to house more vulnerable people. The inference of the report appears to be that tenants should have a choice between private and Social Housing. At present this is price prohibitive and the security of tenure less favourable than Social Housing. This probably explains the reference to the Law Commissions desire to increase the minimum term of an AST from its present 6 months. The only way such social inclusion will arise is if Local Housing Allowances rise. Possibly re-introduce the Rental Deposit Assistance from the Social fund that was abolished in 1988. This Social Freedom of choice is referred to as 'Equalising Rental Choice' in the report.
Local authorities taking steps to better understand the sector and support good landlords whilst tackling poorly performing landlords and promoting tenants' rights. If a licence is introduced the council will have the power to issue points against the licence. Such a system would see many councils lose their licences - but no doubt the social rented sector would be exempt from such scrutiny. [as like other rules]. The Report rightly highlight that tenant satisfaction is higher in the Private Rented Sector than in the social rented sector.
A possible MOT 'Home Condition Certificate' for properties payable by the Landlord.
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.