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31 March 2011

Rogue landlords surface in rental boom

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by Gill Montia

Rogue landlords surface in rental boom

Rogue landlords are taking advantage of the rental sector boom, Shelter warns.

The housing charity is calling on the Government to give tenants more protection as the number of households privately renting hits 3.4 million.

Shelter says it has seen a 23% increase in the number of tenants seeking help for problems with their landlord in the past 12 months, including reports of: dampness and disrepair in private properties (42% increase); harassment by private landlords (24% increase); unfair or unexpected rent rises (19% increase).

The charity is therefore asking Housing Minister, Grant Shapps, to produce a plan to tackle rogue landlords by ensuring that all local authorities sign up to a minimum standard accreditation scheme.

Shelter’s chief executive, Campbell Robb, says: “With Government policy directing more vulnerable people towards the private rented sector, it seems entirely negligent … to have not yet produced any clear commitment to clamp down on rogue landlords.”

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