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Inquiry launched into UK private rented sector by Parliamentary Committee

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An inquiry into the role of local authorities in dealing with rogue landlords in the Private Rented Sector (PRS) has been launched by a British Parliamentary Committee.

With more and more people renting homes - the PRS has grown from one in 10 households in 2004 to one in five households in 2016 with the under 40s making up 70% of households - the Communities and Local Government Committee will be examining whether councils have enough power to deal with bad practices in the PRS.

It will also look at the effectiveness of complaint mechanism for tenants, barriers to intervention in the PRS, and whether landlord licensing schemes are promoting higher quality accommodation.

The Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) welcomed the inquiry as a great opportunity to review enforcement in the PRS. “With what appears to be a coherent strategy on the regulation of the PRS coming from the Government, it is an ideal time to review what has worked and what hasn’t” said chief executive David Cox.

The inquiry follows on from a committee report published in 2013 which highlighted five key areas in which the Government should take action including:

  • reviewing and simplifying the legislation covering the sector;
  • giving local authorities the tools they need to enforce the law and raise standards;
  • better regulation of letting agents;
  • a cultural shift towards longer tenancies; and
  • a renewed effort to boost housing supply.

The closing date for submissions to the inquiry is Friday 24 November 2017 at midday.