Home  News  Advice for landlords as the Homes Act becomes law

Category: News

Advice for landlords as the Homes Act becomes law

Reading Time: 2 Mins Read

The Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act came into force on 20 March 2019, giving tenants the right to sue landlords whose properties fail to come up to scratch.

Advice for landlords as the Homes Act becomes law

 

The act obliges landlords to ensure that properties are ‘fit for habitation’ – that they have good sanitation, adequate ventilation and access to natural light. It also covers issues including damp, presence of asbestos, overcrowding and problems with the water supply.

All tenancies of less than seven years are covered by the act; these are the majority. New and renewing tenancies, signed after 20 March, will be subject to the legislation immediately. Existing fixed-term tenancies will fall under the requirements of the act when they are renewed. Periodic tenancies have until 20 March 2020 to become compliant.

Also known as the Homes Act, the legislations were introduced by MP Karen Buck and is an update to the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985.

Previously, a landlord would be considered in breach of contract if their property was not in a good state of repair – for example with broken windows or faulty appliances and local authorities were required to enforce the rules.

The new act means that the courts now have the authority to order landlords to carry out repairs and award damages to tenants.

Advice for landlords seeking to comply with the law is to keep properties in a good state of repair and respond to issues promptly. Maintaining lines of communication with tenants and carrying out regular inspections are also recommended.

David Cox, Chief Executive of industry body ARLA Propertymark said: “We’re pleased the Homes Act is coming into force and congratulate Karen Buck MP on her work to provide a better private rented sector for all. This new legislation will give renters greater protection against criminal operators and means they will now be able to take direct legal action if their agent or landlord does not comply.”

Read more about this story on the ARLA Propertymark website.

Neil Jennings

Neil is the Operations Director at Assetgrove Lettings, London's Leading Rent Guarantee Company, providing Landlords with no voids, property maintenance, fee-free property management and stress-free service.

Related Post

Landlords “doing all they can” for tenants affected by Covid
Updates: 2 Mins Read
Landlords “doing all they can” for tenants affected by Covid

Claims that the end of the evictions ban, on 23 August, will mean a big increase in tenants losing their homes have been disputed by

How to do tenant viewings in the post-lockdown era
Updates: 2 Mins Read
How to do tenant viewings in the post-lockdown era

As letting agencies get back to business following seven weeks of covid-19 lockdown, the government has issued advice for landlords conducting viewings while observing social

Call for private sector rent freeze in the face of recession
Updates: 2 Mins Read
Call for private sector rent freeze in the face of recession

A think tank is calling on the government to introduce an immediate rent freeze to protect more than a million renters at risk of losing