Landlord Law Newsround #343

Landlord Law Blog NewsroundAnother week and another Newsround let’s see what has caught our eye at Landlord Law this week.

The Labour Party Manifesto

This was published yesterday.  As Labour are virtually certain to win the election on July 4, their manifesto is the only one that matters.

I won’t put anything about it here as I wrote a post last night setting out what they have to say about the PRS (which isn’t much).

My feeling, though, is that once they are in power, the whole tone of government will change, and we will see fast-moving change.

I suspect also that they will be enthusiastically supported by the Civil Service who are no doubt tired of being bullied and disrespected by Tory ministers.  Plus, Labour have Sue Gray.

Competition for rented properties increase

Gumtree and House Buy Fast have published a new report in which they claim there are over 40 prospective tenants vying for the same property, with Bedfordshire coming out the highest hotspot with 49 people for every house up for rent. Other popular towns include Sheffield, Reading, Newcastle and Bournemouth but is not exclusively just at these towns, it is all over the UK.

This is a combination of sheer demand, tenants struggling in the financial crisis with less affordable rentals out there.

Hannah Rouch from Gumtree says

Gumtree’s data indicates that the rental market is under huge pressure, with home hunters competing against tens of others as soon as listings are posted.

Gumtree claims that 163,000 rental properties have gradually gone from the PRS between 2019 and 2023 as many landlords sell up.

Digital logbooks for landlords

Landlords could have to start keeping a digital logbook on their rented properties to show that they are compliant with energy efficiency.

Discussions are being had to link the EPC information to a logbook that could also hold information about the property along with any changes that have been made and any planned improvements. Longer term they could even be linked into the Land Registry and local authority licensing schemes, according to the Residential Logbook Association.

Nigel Walley of the RLBA says these logbooks are compulsory in France and Germany and it is only a matter of time before they will be required here.

In this context, you may be interested in revisiting the first of my podcasts with Ben Beadle, where we discussed Unique Property Reference numbers with Kate Faulkner.

Scotland’s PRS is shrinking – official

It is now official that Scotland’s private rented sector is getting smaller. The South of Scotland Enterprise admits that the Scottish Housing Bill of rent controls has led to landlords leaving the market, resulting in a housing emergency.

The South of Scotland Enterprise states that they have seen a reduction in the number of properties along with the number of registered landlords. They state

A decline in the number of landlords and rental properties in our region is driving even higher demand for remaining properties, for social housing and presentations to council homelessness services.

We are very concerned about the fragility of the private rental sector in the South of Scotland and the risk that more landlords will sell their properties, further reducing supply of much needed private rental properties.

They are wanting more investment to support the private rented sector.

This dire situation is something Labour will hopefully take note of when setting their agenda for housing law reform in England.

Landlords, do you have a current fire risk assessment?

Landlords have been warned that staying up to date with their fire safety obligations is critical following a recent case where a landlord received a six-month prison sentence, suspended for 18 months and 250 community service hours when he admitted violating fire safety rules within his rented property where a fire broke out and 11 occupants had to be rescued by the fire service.

The landlord had failed to install fire alarms, emergency lighting and fire doors. Phil Turtle, director of Landlord Licensing & Defence said

Having a fire risk assessment, particularly for HMOs is essential for landlords to meet their legal obligations and ensure the safety of their tenants. This is a crucial step in identifying potential fire hazards in a rental property.

It helps landlords develop a plan to mitigate these risks and ensure safe escape routes for tenants in case of a fire.

Phil Turtle advises that all landlords and agents regularly conduct fire risk assessments, have the correct fire safety equipment, and educate their tenants on fire safety procedures.

Note that we had a members-only training session on fire safety law with Justin Bates KC recently, which Landlord Law members will find here.


Generation Rent quibbles over proposal for landlord register
Acorn challenged for taking a dig at PRS
PRS is facing ‘a huge mismatch’ between supply and demand – RICS
Legal appeal aims to protect landlords’ postal rights
HMO Neglect leads to Five Figure Fine for landlord
Disabled high-rise residents ‘still at risk’ seven years after Grenfell fire

Newsrund will be back next week.

The post Landlord Law Newsround #343 appeared first on The Landlord Law Blog.





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