Law News

Government to Review Safety Standards of Rental Housing

Rose Jinks - October 29, 2018

Industry bodies are welcoming the news that the Government will review the safety standards expected of rental housing.

The Housing, Health and Safety Ratings System (HHSRS) is used by local authorities to assess the health and safety of residential properties, including both private rental and social rental housing.

The Policy Director of the Residential Landlords Association (RLA), David Smith, says: “We welcome the Government’s decision to review the safety standards around rented housing, which the RLA has long called for. The current system has not been updated for 12 years, with the guidance alongside it equally out of date.

“This review provides an important opportunity to improve enforcement against the minority of landlords who bring the sector into disrepute and fail to provide the safe accommodation they should.”

David Cox, the Chief Executive of ARLA Propertymark (the Association of Residential Letting Agents), also responds: “It’s excellent news that the Government will review the existing HHSRS, which we have long said is too complicated, and poorly understood by tenants, landlords, agents and enforcement officers.

“We need to create a practical system with criteria which are easy to use, and fully support the recommendation in the Rugg review for a property MOT, which will ensure that a home meets a minimum set of requirements and that the landlord understands what is expected of them.”

The RLA has also spoken out today about its support of NatWest’s announcement to review the issue of landlords being prevented from letting to benefit claimants.

We wait to hear from the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, of any developments to buy-to-let and housing in his highly awaited Autumn Budget announcement today. We will be covering all of the industry experts’ opinions and reactions to the statement throughout the rest of the week.

Stay tuned to Landlord News for your daily property updates.