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New powers for Pendle to tackle rogue landlords

Published: Tuesday, 29th August 2017

Thousands of tenants in Pendle will be better protected thanks to new enforcement powers to tackle rogue landlords.

Pendle Council’s Executive has agreed how the new national legislation, which became law in April 2017, will work in Pendle.

The Housing and Planning Act has introduced the new civil penalties of up to £30,000 as an alternative to prosecution for certain offences.

Councillor Asjad Mahmood who leads on housing explained: “Pendle has 7,000 rented properties owned by private landlords and whilst there are many good landlords there are some rogue landlords who are letting their tenants down.

“We can now give civil penalties for a range of offences which badly affect people’s quality of life, without the lengthy process of taking landlords to court.”

Offences include failure to comply with an improvement notice and contravening an overcrowding notice.

Pendle Council’s Environmental Health Manager Paul Lloyd added: “Using these new powers will support the work Pendle Council already carries out to tackle rogue landlords, including inspections and prohibiting the use of unfit buildings for tenants.

“These new civil penalties and rent repayment orders should act as a powerful deterrent to rogue landlords as we enforce the new powers – with significant financial penalties!”

Pendle Council has followed the government’s guidelines in agreeing how the new policy is put in place.

“We’ve also worked with other councils in Pennine Lancashire to ensure consistency as a number of landlords have properties for rent in several areas in East Lancashire,” added Councillor Mahmood.

Executive councillors agreed that money raised from the new civil penalties would be ploughed straight back into the housing revenue budget to fund more enforcement activity.

The policy will go before Council on Thursday 26 October for final approval.