Government funding to tackle criminal landlords ‘nowhere near enough’, says RLA

Although welcome, the government’s recent announcement that it will provide new funding to help stamp out rogue landlords largely failed to impress the Residential Landlords Association.

The RLA welcomed the news but claimed it was nowhere near enough to properly find and root out the crooks.

Ministers recently announced that local authorities will be able to access almost £4 million in new funding, as part of what it describes as a “crackdown on criminal landlords” for 2019/20. This comes after £2 million was made available for similar efforts in 2018/19.

The funding comes on the day that the RLA has shown that whilst the number of regulations imposing new obligations on landlords has increased by a third since 2010, councils are failing to properly use them.

David Smith, Policy Director for the Residential Landlords Association, said: “We welcome the Government’s focus on rooting out criminal landlords. For too long the debate has been driven by ideological calls for more regulation of the sector. What is needed is better enforcement of the powers already available to root out the minority who bring the sector into disrepute.

That said, today’s funding is simply not enough to achieve this. Rather than throwing odd bits of cash around the Government needs to provide proper, multi-year funding to councils to enable them to plan and prepare clear strategies to find the crooks whilst supporting good landlords. This includes ensuring enough funding is in place to recruit sufficient numbers of well-trained enforcement officers.”

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