As reported in Channel 4’s Dispatches televised on Monday 4th July 2011 at 8pm, there are a significant amount of private landlords who fail to keep rental properties in a safe condition for their tenants.
Exposed wires and boilers, unsafe stairs, hazardous fires, faulty sockets, damaged walls, paths and roofs and damp and mould are just a few of the common hazards faced by a large proportion of UK tenants. Sadly local authorities don’t seem to be willing to take action against landlords who refuse to repair or maintain their properties in a safe and habitable manner.
Dispatches reported that:
“In a recent survey by Shelter nearly 80% of environmental health officers have come across landlords who persistently refuse to maintain their properties to a decent standard but 2/3rd’s say no landlords were prosecuted in the last 12 months”
“Government own research reveals that 40% of all rented homes in England are in poor condition”
Your home should be somewhere where you and your family can feel safe. Rogue landlords destroy this simple human right by failing to carry out basic repairs to the properties they let. They are happy to take your money but are not so happy to protect you and your family.
Landlords are governed by many laws and regulations to ensure that the property you and your family live in is safe. This is a fundamental principle which many landlords ignore and it is time that they are held accountable for exposing people to often hazardous living conditions. In addition to their basic duty to ensure the premises are safe, they also have responsibilities to undertake such as:
- repairs to the structure and exterior of the property
- repairs to heating and hot water installations
- repairs to sinks, baths and other sanitary installations
- safety of gas and electrical appliances that they supply
- fire safety of furniture and furnishings that they supply
At present local authorities do not appear to be using the measures available to them to protect tenants, many of whom are some of our most vulnerable members of society. However, it doesn’t just have to be down to your local authority to take action to improve rental accommodation. You can take action too and can make a claim for compensation for the injuries you or your family have sustained as a result of living in such unsafe and frankly, dangerous conditions.
We understand that some people are scared that taking any action against their landlord could result in their eviction. Legally your landlord is not allowed to evict a tenant without a specific possession order from the Court which can take several months to obtain. Evicting tenants without such an order is a criminal offence for which your landlord can be prosecuted and imprisoned.
What we can do
If you have been injured or suffered illness as a result of the dangerous condition of your rental property, we can help you to claim compensation against your landlord.
At Harris Fowler, we want to help lead the fight against these landlords and in doing so we also want to help people get the compensation and treatment they are entitled too for the injuries they have sustained in their home.
If you or a family member have been the victim of a rogue landlord and sustained injury then contact us on 0800 213214 or complete our simple on line enquiry form to discuss claiming compensation.