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  • Buy-to-Let

    Homes Fitness for Habitation Bill

    Law-abiding, professional landlords of course support the 'aim' of the bill and Landlord Associations politically [ with a small 'p' ] have to be seen to be at least Not opposing it.

    But, ..   are enough questions being asked about its potential for misuse by tenants who've been served a Sec 21  ?

    See my letter to my MP below.   Could I have some feedback if any other landlords share my concern, if so, you may wish to use my letter or similar to your MP ?

    Dear Mr Johnson,

    There is a lot of support amongst landlords for the above bill that, as
    its aim, seeks to provide a means by which tenants in clearly
    substandard Housing " Unfit for Human Habitation " can bring redress
    against what would be considered a 'rogue landlord' through the court.

    As a ( responsible ) landlord, as you may know from previous
    correspondence, I have no problem with the aim of the Bill.

    From my reading of it, which I don't see amendments or debate
    clarifying, I'd like to know what safeguards against misuse by 'Rogue
    Tenants', have been considered.

    Unfortunately, this is another instance where the consideration or
    belief is that there are Only  'Rogues' on one side of the PRS sector.

    There are Rogue or Criminal landlords, but not apparently that anyone
    acknowledges, Criminal tenants.   Numerous acts or even omissions can
    label a landlord Criminal, yet a tenant can never be regarded as such !
      Damage, even where it can be demonstrably shown to be malicious,
    persistent refusal to pay thousands of pounds in rent lawfully due - in
    fact  nothing a tenant does in the PRS is considered a criminal offence,
    least alone acted upon by the Police or even sanctioned  for prosecution
    by CPS.

    The result of this is various strategies by landlords, from exiting the
    business ( reducing rental stock ) to being defensive over tenant
    selection. The effect of bad tenants on the majority of good tenants is

    Whilst landlords have come to expect this perception by the labour
    party, we do seek and hope that the Government are alive to both sides
    of the equation and are providing the necessary checks and balances.

    I  am of course referring to situations where a tenant is being served
    with a Section 21 Possession notice and notwihstanding the already
    hugely impactive delays ( and subsequent costs ) of this process to a
    landlord, a tenant may 'tactically' choose to bring a claim for some
    alleged disrepair under this bill through the courts

    Some claims under the bill have the provision for legal aid. ( read,
    even further delays )

    My concern is that there appears no early scrutiny and prevention of
    such claims.  Further, that in the event of such a claim by a tenant, I
    would have little doubt that a court Possession process would be placed
    on hold - delayed.

    I look forward to your serious consideration and hopefully, assistance
    in this matter.

    Your constituent,

    Chris Daniel
    Possession Friend.uk

    Hi Chris,

    I have forwarded your letter onto Karen Buck MP and asked her if she is able to respond.  I will keep you posted.