Call for landlord licensing scheme
The proposals would be designed to improve regulation of landlords and could see those letting out unsuitable or potentially dangerous properties blacklisted.
In its report, “Paying a High Price For a Faulty Product”, Citizens Advice estimated that more than 700,000 tenants currently live in a privately rented dwelling that does not meet minimum standards.
Some of the more common problems include infestations of vermin and issues with damp, although more serious health and safety concerns are also becoming increasingly commonplace.
As a result of the findings, Citizens Advice has called for rules that apply at local authority level to be implemented nationally, meaning that all landlords will have to obtain a licence before they can let out a property.
The call follows concerns that England is lagged behind the other parts of the United Kingdom when it comes to implementing a formal landlord register.
At present English councils have the power to issue landlords with improvement notices and prohibition orders, and then prosecute through the courts, but critics have stated that the current arrangements don’t go far enough.