The National Private Tenants Organisation is changing, and we want to hear from you.
March 7, 2014

NPTO is going through a big transition. We have changed our name to Generation Rent, and will soon be revealing a whole new look online. We are also reviewing how we can best represent the nine million renters around the UK most effectively and would like your feedback.

One of the core missions of Generation Rent is to facilitate the participation of private tenants to promote decent, secure and affordable homes in the private rented sector. We believe that the most effective way to achieve this is through a vibrant network of local groups, independent and nimble enough to take local action while building a cohesive movement powerful enough to bend national political will.  The document that can be downloaded below outlines our initial thoughts on how we can best do this.

There are already a number of private renters groups across the UK alongside areas completely lacking in PRS advocacy. There is also a variety of approaches to tenant advocacy. Some of these groups define themselves as being for all renters, including social renters. Others represent tenants and residents more widely, or indeed count RSL tenants as private sector.

 Generation Rent would like our relationships with existing and emerging local groups to reflect their diverse needs and desires, while maintaining as much cohesion amongst the groups as possible. This consultation document seeks to gather views on how we should relate to local renters groups. We want your views on how we should organise Generation Rent to be both participative and effective.

Please send us your responses to betsydillner@generationrent.org by Sunday 23rd March, telling us who you are, responding to the points of interest to you below, and with any other suggestions you think we should consider. We welcome responses from individuals and groups. We will compile the responses into an options paper for our Trustees to consider at a meeting early in April.

Click here to download the consultation document. Please send an email to betsydillner@generationrent.org if you have trouble accessing the document for any reason.

Many thanks for helping!

The National Private Tenants Organisation calls on government
to protect renters from flood damage

 22 January, 2014

Ahead of the second reading of the Water Bill 2013 in the House of Lords next week, the National Private Tenants Organisation has called for an amendment to allow access to cheap flood insurance in the private rented sector.

Currently privately rented homes would not be eligible for the government’s Flood Reinsurance Scheme (Flood Re), meaning millions of tenants could be hit by homelessness and uncertainty should their property be flooded. With landlords only able to access more expensive flood insurance, it is likely that these increased costs would be passed on to tenants through their rents. At a time when rents are already at an unaffordable level for many, this would signal a further crippling expense for renters.

The proposed scheme looks to address affordable insurance in the case of flooding, by providing government caps on the costs to insurers and policyholders where flooding occurs. The increased incidence and cost of flood situations in recent years has given this urgency and the scheme is proposed as a long-term, sustainable solution. However, the entire private rented sector is excluded, meaning these properties will either have to go uninsured or buy insurance at a much-inflated price, a cost likely to be passed on to tenants.

Alex Hilton, Director of the National Private Tenants Organisation, said:

“Renters are tax-payers too and it seems perverse that they should be paying an insurance subsidy to homeowners when they are already squeezed between high rents and low wages.”

------------
        
**More information about the Water Bill 2013 andits progress can be found at http://services.parliament.uk/bills/2013-14/water.html
       
**For further comment and information, please contact Seb Klier, Policy and Campaigns Manager, NPTO, 07432 654 290 or Alex Hilton, Director, NPTO, 07794 771 113 

NPTO is proud to support Gas Safety Week

Gas Safety Week takes place 16-22nd Sept. All landlords and tenants should make sure only Gas Safe registered
engineers carry out annual safety checks in rented accommodation. NPTO also wants to see electrical wiring and
appliances in all privately rented homes peridoically tested and inspected, we want to see legislation introduced to make mandatory.

For more information please visit: www.gassaferegister.co.uk/learn/gas_safety_week.aspx

Renters Rights Social on Friday 13th September

Advice4Renters are organising a renters rights social this Friday at 7pm at the Albert, 1 Albert Road (Brent) NW6 5DT.
Click here to view a map.
Click here for more details.

TV programme looking for stories of unfair electricity charges for private tenants

A TV programme about electricity abstraction in London is being produced. The programme makers are working with a power company,
a police force and a fire brigade talking on the dangers of the practice.  The makers will also be looking at the other side of electricity abstraction which takes place in residential homes. They are particularly keen to find case studies of either people who have been ripped off by rogue landlords or people who have been driven to electricity abstraction because of poverty.

Do you have a story to tell, please let us know. Email: enquiries@npto.org.uk  all details and personal information will be kept
confidential and nothing will be passed to third parties without your full permission and knowledge.

Posted 24th August 2013

MP Jeremy Corbyn will speak at a public meeting at Islington Town Hall in September to promote his private member’s bill

Islington North MP Jeremy Corbyn will speak at a public meeting at Islginton Town Hall on 10th September as part of an effort to kick-start plans for his private member’s bill to control Britain’s private housing. He said: “The bill is designed to bring some protection and some justice to tenants forced to privately rent with no security of tenure and no proper regulation of letting agents.”

For more information please visit: http://www.islingtontribune.com/news/2013/aug/mp-kick-starts-bill-renters and
https://www.facebook.com/events/165220653663785/


Posted 10th August 2013

NPTO publishes business plan for 2013-18


The National Private Tenants Organisation has published it's business plan for 2013-18, click here to read it.


Posted 16/07/2013


PRESS RELEASE

For immediate use

To: Editors

From: National Private Tenants Organisation

Date 11th June 2013, 10.53GMT

Subject: Time to stop putting private tenants at risk

Compulsory electrical testing is needed now


A recent report by the Electrical Safety Council has revealed really shocking findings including that the fact that 1.7 million private renters report electrical faults that are ignored or acted on too late.


The Chairperson of NPTO said: “One of our members nearly lost their life to due to damp getting into wiring and sockets”. “We are calling for compulsory periodic inspection and testing of electrical installations and appliances in all private rented homes.”


NPTO is campaigning to put an end to this unnecessary risk and is also calling for mandatory minimum standards for private rented homes as a precondition of letting.


The Secretary of NPTO Jacky Peacock OBE, said: “We simply can not understand why gas appliances have to be tested annually

but not electrics! Both are potentially fatal if faulty. This risk has to end now.”


Notes for Editors:

1.	For further information or comments please contact:
Chairperson  NPTO email: enquiries@npto.org.uk

2.	The National Private Tenants Organisation campaigns for a professionally managed, secure, decent and affordable 
private rented sector in England. For more information please visit:
http://www.npto.btck.co.uk 3. The full Electrical Safety Council report can be viewed at: http://www.esc.org.uk/public/news-and-campaigns/press-releases/news/article/landlords-risking-lives-and-livlihoods-by-
ignoring-electrical-safety/
4. Details of the NPTO electrical safety campaign can be viewed at: http://keeprentingsafe.weebly.com/ Posted 13/6/13

Revealed: The Hidden Costs of Private Renting


The hidden costs of renting private accommodation in Northern Ireland have been revealed in an undercover survey carried out by Housing Rights Service. A ‘mystery shopping’ survey of 40 lettings agents across Northern Ireland found that upfront fees of as much as £100 were demanded by some agents to cover routine services such as credit checks and general administration costs. This was on top of a deposit (normally one month’s rent) and a month’s rent in advance.


The findings were published today by Housing Rights Service and show that prospective tenants in the private rented sector are faced with significant upfront costs, variable fees and a lack of transparency in an unregulated lettings market. The investigation found that the average cost charged by letting agents for such fees was £48, with the highest cost £100. The charity believes these fees can create a major financial obstacle for prospective tenants to overcome when they already face paying a month’s rent in advance and a deposit before they even receive the keys to their rented accommodation.


According to Nicola McCrudden, Policy Manager: “We are concerned that many local letting agents are not only increasing financial pressures on hard pressed tenants who urgently need a roof over their heads and who, in many cases, have little or no choice but to pay these charges; but they are also undermining the work of those good letting agents who offer a fair deal to tenants. The charges are particularly unjustified considering that many landlords are also likely to be paying agents for the same services as tenants. There is a real danger that these fees are preventing some people on low incomes from finding suitable private rented accommodation and could be adding pressure on already over-subscribed social housing waiting list.”


Housing Rights Service believes that these charges are unfair and such business costs should be covered by either the agents themselves or the landlord. Unlike estate agents, letting agents are unregulated and under no compulsion to hold membership of an ombudsman service, leaving dissatisfied tenants with no access to redress. Housing Rights Service has also called for greater clarity in the law and to rule if the practice of charging such fees is illegal as is the case in Scotland.


The housing charity recommends that there should be a requirement for letting agents to clearly present thee fees on their websites, in adverts and in all promotional material in a way that is easily comparable across letting agents. On several occasions in the course of the survey, letting agency staff were unable to provide accurate information on the fees that they charge and only 10% of the agents displayed information about fees on their websites. Housing Rights Service believes that by failing to disclose fees upfront or during their first contact with a customer, letting agents are breaching consumer law by not providing this information in a manner that is clear and timely. According to the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA), letting agents must clearly display tenancy fees when marketing rental properties.


Nicola McCrudden added:” We need more transparency so prospective tenants at least know what fees they’re facing and to help create a more competitive lettings market. We believe that the evidence from this survey supports the call for regulation of the letting agent industry and that no charges should be imposed on tenants for functions which are part of the routine letting and landlord management process.”


Click here to read the full report.


Press release from Housing Rights Service, Middleton Buildings, 10-12 High Street, Belfast, www.housingrights.org.uk

Posted 23rd May 2013

NPTO Press Release

PRESS RELEASE
For immediate use
To: Editors
From: National Private Tenants Organisation
Date: 11th May 2013, 13:32pm
Subject: Immigration Bill in Queens Speech May 2013
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Checks on tenants but not landlords!"

The Immigration Bill announced in the Queen's speech sets out a requirement for landlords
to check the immigration status of tenants.The National Private Tenants Organisation (NPTO)
has asked why they is not requirement to check the immigration status of landlords.
Because of the absence of a national licensing scheme for private rented sector landlords tenants
continue to suffer at the hands of ogue landlords.

NPTO is asking for Landlords to provide their prospective tenants with evidence of their own immigration
status and their right to let the property offered. The Chairperson of NPTO said: “It is essential that the
rights of private tenants are not overlooked. We need legislation to allow tenants to report rogue landlords
without the fear of being evicted. This practice is called retaliatory eviction”.

The Secretary of NPTO has said: “In Scotland private tenants receive a Tenant Information Pack which
provides important information to tenants who rent their homes privately. Landlords have a legal duty to
provide new tenants with this pack.”

Posted 11th May 2013

Landlords fail to carry out gas safety checks

One in 10 tenants renting privately has not had a mandatory gas safety check carried out in the last year,
according to research. A study of 4,300 private renters in England carried out by YouGov for housing charity
Shelter has suggested as many as 900,000 people across the country could be at risk from gas safety hazards.

Posted 9th May 2013


Let us know your experiences of renting

We are keen to hear about your experiences or renting. We can use your stories (personal details will be kept
confidential) to fight for an improvement in security, affordability and standards and accommodation and management.
Please send you stories to enquiries@npto.org.uk Together we can bring about change.

Posted 4th May 2013



NPTO joins the International Union of Tenants

NPTO is proud to announce that it has been accepted as an associate member of the International Union of Tenants
(www.iut.nu).

Posted 26/04/2013
 
Tenants who have had landlord disputes wanted

BBC3 are making a new presenter-led programme about the issues that young people are facing in getting on the
property ladder and also in the rental market.

We're looking for tenants who have had landlord disputes – real nightmare cases of flooding, rats, sewage etc.
As the series is for BBC3, you'll need to be aged 19 - 29. Please contact Tosca Barnes on 0203 614 0368 or
tosca.barnes@bbc.co.uk

Posted 14th April 2013

Have you been evicted because you have complained?

Bristol Council want to know whether private tenants in the city are being evicted when they've complained to the council
about the conditions of their property. Bristol Council has said "Along with other organisations working with private tenants,
we think that this is a problem." If you live in the Council's area please respond to their survey at:
https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Retaliatoryevictions
The National Private Tenants Organisation believes that there is a real in the private rented sector due to rogue landlords
evicting tenants when they make legitimate complaints. Join NPTO to fight for a better deal for private tenants.

Austerity Audit

The Financial Times has produced a very powerful analysis of how the Governments benefits cuts impact across the
Country - so Blackpool hit hardest with annual loss of £914 per person of working age by 2015 - compared to say £247
for Cambridge and £177 for the City of London.

An interactive analysis (by postcode) can be accessed at http://ig.ft.com/austerity-map/ with wider commentary at
www.ft.com/austerity

Posted 11th April

Changes to legal aid for housing cases

The changes to legal aid including housing case will mean that many people will have to pay privately for advice or use
no-win, no-fee lawyers, seek support from one of a number of charities that offer legal help, or represent themselves
in trying to solve their disputes. There are real concerns that the reforms will deny justice to the poorest and
disadvantaged in society.

Changes to legal aid from 1st April 2013 mean that only the following housing related cases will remain within
the scope of legal aid:

- Possession of the home (other than mortgage possession)
- Eviction from the home (including unlawful eviction)
- Seeking repairs to rented accommodation where the disrepairs pose a serious risk of harm to health or safety
- Homelessness assistance for persons who are homeless or threatened with homelessness
- Injunctions under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 in the context of housing and ASBO matters in
  the county court.

Housing Possession Court Duty Schemes
Whilst the scope of this work will not be changing, any organisations undertaking this work will need to hold a
Housing Contract.

Out of the scope of legal aid will be:
- Housing matters, except those where the home is at immediate risk (excluding those who are “squatting”),
homelessness assistance, housing disrepair cases that pose a serious risk to life or health and anti-social
behaviour cases in the county court;
- Welfare benefits; except for appeals in the Upper Tribunal; onward appeals on a point of law to the Court of Appeal
and Supreme Court.

(Source: http://www.justice.gov.uk/legal-aid/newslatest-updates/legal-aid-reform/scope)

From April 2013, the small claims limit for damages only claims will increase from £5,000 to £10,000. In addition,
from April 2013, the level of general damages payable will be increased by 10%.

The cutoff to claim legal aid will be a household income of £32,000, and those earning between £14,000 and £32,000
will have to take a means test.

Details of the legislation (Legal Aid, Sentancing and Punishement of Offenders Act 2012) can be viewed at: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2012/10/contents/enacted

Posted 1st April 2013


Home sweet home

"As Cardiff prepared to host the kick off of this year’s successful Six Nations campaign, activists and leaders from the
Riverside area of the city came together to take action to ensure better conditions for private tenants. Local leader and
Movement for Change activist Ewan Moor led the first action last month, and a discussion to see what people wanted
to ask landlords and local letting agents to sign up to in order to make sure private tenants in Cardiff had positive
experiences of life in the city.

After weeks of organising, the action saw people gather to hear testimony of life as a private tenant in Cardiff. The
leaders present were especially angered by one testimony which explained how a local resident had been forced to
live in terrible conditions, with rodents and snakes a regular feature, while their landlord didn’t reply to any complaints.

The experiences were good and bad, but they all contributed to the final agreement on the key asks for the Home
Sweet Home Charter.People also heard from local activists Alex Bevan and Jo Galazka, who talked about the national
context of the issue of private rentals, and how community charters had worked in other parts of the country for different
issues.

The next steps were also agreed. And the first follow-up action was run the day before Valentine’s Day. The team of
activists put together Valentine’s cards and paper roses for estate agents and landlords in the area, and went
agent-to-agent to present them, to talk about the campaign, and to develop relationships with key people. The session
was fun, but most importantly it meant a relationship was built with the agents.

This enabled the activists on the ground to arrange 1-2-1 meetings with agents and landlords in order to ask them to
sign the Charter, and to come along to a public meeting to do so in front of the community.The next steps are coming
in the next few months, as the activists bring landlords and agents to the community to publicly sign the Charter and
then aim to get local authorities and stakeholders to promote the Charter and the good landlords that sign it.With the
help of good landlords, Home Sweet Home activists will be making life in Cardiff better for residents across the city."

Article courtesy of Movement for Change  21/03/2013 http://www.movementforchange.org.uk/2013/03/21/home-sweet-home/

The lettings market – Office of Fair Trading report

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has produced a report on the letting market. The report found that the main areas of concern for tenants were surprising and high charges, confusion about holding deposits, misleading advertising, repairs not being carried out on the property and non-refund of security deposits. To see the full report visit: http://www.oft.gov.uk/OFTwork/markets-work/othermarketswork/lettings/

Posted 16/02/2013

Exciting news from the Isle of Man  Isle of Man flag

The Isle of Man Government is consulting on progressive legislation (Landlord and Tenant (Private Housing) Bill 2013)
to require private rented sector landlords to be registered, a condition of registration being that a set of minimum
standards are met.

The Landlord and Tenant (Private Housing) Bill refers to a set of minimum standards that will be applied to the landlord
and their property/properties and allows enforcement action against those standards. Landlords will have to confirm
they meet these standards in order to register and they will be taken into account by Environmental Health Officers in
any inspection of a property.

The new legislation will:
- Require landlords of rented dwellings, who are not exempt, to be registered;
- Require landlords, and their rented dwellings to comply with minimum standards made by the Dept. of Social Care
- Require landlords, who do not themselves meet the minimum standards, to use a letting agent to manage the tenancy of their properties
- Allow the Department of Social Care to enforce those minimum standards

For more information visit:
http://www.gov.im/ConsultationDetail.gov?id=365
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-isle-of-man-21341786

The proposed legislation also echoes our demands for compulsory inspection and testing of electrical appliances in all
private rented accommodation. The time is overdue for private landlords in England to be registered.

Posted 5/2/2013


New research on the private rented sector

The Building and Social Housing Foundation has published new research on the household characteristics
of the private rented sector. To download the document visit: http://www.bshf.org/published-information/publication.cfm?lang=00&thePubID=19F007B2-15C5-F4C0-990836C156D907F7

Posted 28/01/2013

Debate on the private rented sector in the House of Commons

The transcript of the debate in the House of Commons on the private rented sector can be read at:
http://www.theyworkforyou.com/debates/?id=2013-01-23a.378.0&s=speaker%3A10576

And http://www.bbc.co.uk/democracylive/21145314

Posted on 25th January 2013

Labour announces plans for a national landlord register

Ed Miliband has announced at a speech to the Fabian Society that "we will introduce a national register of landlords, to give greater powers for local authorities to root out and strike off rogue landlords" and  "stopping families being ripped off by letting agents. And giving new security to families who rent." and "We will end the confusing, inconsistent fees and charges in the private rented sector. And we will seek to give greater security to families who rent and remove the barriers that stand in the way of longer term tenancies." Sounds interesting but more detail is needed. There was no mention of rent control, dealing with retaliatory eviction, mandatory minimum standards for decent housing and ending insecure tenancies for all private tenants.

Posted 12th January 2013

Record your experiences of renting

You can record your experiences of renting at http://tenanttales.com/ The website is a place where
private tenants review their landlords, letting agents, properties and areas. 
Posted on 31/12/2012, 12:09pm

Renters protest high rents and poor standards at City Hall (London) Meeting Tuesday 18 December



Housing groups across London came together today to demand that members of the City Hall meeting hear loud and
clear the views of private tenants as they form their recommendations for the private rented sector. 15-20 members of
London private tenants groups Brent Private Tenants’ Rights Group, Digs, Haringey Housing Action Group and
Housing for the 99% carried out a lively, vocal protest to highlight the imbalance of rights of landlords over private
tenants, extortionate rents and insecure, poor quality private rented housing.

Private tenants gave our leaflets and shouted our demands as London Assembly members arrived at City Hall ahead of the
final meeting of the housing committee’s review of private rented housing. Many passersby expressed support for our
demands as they read the leaflets and banners some of which read 'Cap rents, not benefits'. Some activists  adapted carol
songs to highlight the housing problems and demands, whilst others chatted to passersby to gain support and encourage
people to set up more local housing groups across London. All were united in their demand to return to a situation as seen
prior to 1989 where rent caps existed and tenancies were secure for everyone.

Inside the GLA meeting, a few activists brought the meeting to a standstill to deliver a book of messages from angry private
tenants with demands for rent controls, longer, secure tenancies and an end to Letting Agents' fees. The book of private tenants' messages were given to committee chair Len Duvall who along with the rest of the committee now have a very good understanding
of the need for to take action and include recommendations in their review for rent controls and other changes within the private
rented sector to ensure no tenant is evicted due to high rents or forced out of their homes and communities as a result of benefit
cuts and caps or house disrepair.

Few private tenants have been invited to join these discussions despite them being about their housing situation, but with this
protest we have provided a host of information from the private tenants perspective which can no longer be ignored. Christine
Haigh from Housing for the 99% said, “Considering that there are 1.5m of us in London, private tenants have had pathetically
little voice in this review. We’re being ripped-off with poor quality, insecure housing and urgently need action to raise standards
and control rents.”

We are calling on all private tenants along with anyone concerned with the growing housing crisis to organise in their local neighbourhoods, set up private tenants groups to support one another and campaign for decent, secure and affordable housing
for all.

Jacky Peacock from Brent Private Tenants’ Rights Group said: “The number of people in poverty living in private rented
accommodation has doubled in the last decade as rents have spiralled. We are now seeing families forced into acute
hardship in order to pay the rent, even in places like Harlesden which is not the most luxurious part of London.”


Posted 20/12/2012

2011 Cenus results on tenure published

The size of the private rented sector in local authority areas in England and Wales has been published at

http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/taxonomy/index.html?nscl=Housing+Stock

Sixty four per cent (14.9 million) of households owned their own home in 2011, either with a mortgage or loan, or outright. Home ownership decreased four percentage points since 2001, but more people owned their home outright, an increase of two percentage points from 29 per cent (6.4 million) to 31 per cent (7.2 million). The group that rented from a private landlord or letting agency increased by six percentage points from nine per cent (1.9 million) in 2001 to 15 per cent (3.6 million) in 2011.

Posted 11th December 2012


NPTO AGM


The first AGM of NPTO will be held on 1st December 2012 in Birmingham.

Posted on 28th November 2012

Watch NPTO on online TV channel www.letyourproperty.tv

The Chairperson of NPTO will be taking part in a live debate on online TV channel www.letyourproperty.tv on
Tuesday 20th November at 3.30pm. The focus of the show will be "Generation rent: the great debate"

Posted on 17th November 2012.

NPTO took an active part as a panel member in the Guardian Housing Network online discussion today on rent regulation

To see our contributions for the case for rent regulation please visit:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/housing-network/2012/jun/15/live-discussion-private-rent-regulation

Posted 19/6/2012

Some progressive private landlords are prepared to offer Assured tenancies and fixed-term Assured Shortholds

Sadly the availability of Assured tenancies in the private rented sector is not the norm. Some progressive private housing providers e.g. for retirement properties do offer Assured tenancies, fixed-term tenancies and bespoke packages. The is a desperate need for more secure tenancies to suit the needs of tenants and their families who want to settle in an area and contribute to sustainable communities. In European countries like Germany, which has a large private rented sector (around 60% since 1980), greater regulation in favour of tenants has not lead to a diminished private rented sector. NPTO calls for greater security of tenure to meet the varying needs of tenants. Before taking up a tenancy seek advice from an agency such as Shelter (see our Housing Advice webpage).

To find companies offering Assured tenancies go to Google and enter "assured tenancies+retirement property".

Posted: 12/06/2012

Latest research from ARLA reveals the Government's energy efficiency measures are failing to take hold in the private rental sector

The research, conducted among UK landlords, shows that half (51%)1 of landlords hadn't heard of the Government's flagship Green Deal energy policy. More than a third (36%) don't know the energy rating of their rental property, despite the fact that any
property to let must have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). More than one in ten landlords (14.5%) say some or all properties in their portfolio fall into the bottom EPC categories, with an F or G rating.

Source: Organisation: Association of Residential Lettings Agents Press Releases 11.06.12


NPTO supports calls for tougher controls on payday lending

Update 25/5/2012:
Trade associations representing payday loan companies have agreed to strengthen their codes of practice
around consumer protection following criticism from MPs (see full article at: http://www.insidehousing.co.uk/tenancies/payday-loan-firms-agree-to-tougher-controls/6521999.article).

NPTO is concerned that private tenants are having to use payday loans to pay their rent and other essential items. NPTO
supports a calls to cap the cost of credit if a financial product was deemed to cause ‘consumer detriment’.

Inside Housing reported on the 24th May that:  "Research produced this week by Comres, commissioned by insolvency
practitioners R3, found 98 per cent of MPs and 93 per cent of the public think there is a problem with payday lending. Another study,
from consumer group Which?, last week found more than 60 per cent of people who take out payday loans are using them to buy
essential items such as food, or to pay household bills."

Electrical safety campaign

Visit our dedicated website for NPTO's electrical safety campaign at:      http://KeepRentingSafe.weebly.com

Please sign up to the campaign at: http://keeprentingsafe.weebly.com/sign-up.html

Email:   KeepRentingSafe@gmail.com



PRESS RELEASE


From: National Private Tenants Organisation
Date: 12th April 2012: 2.15pm
For immediate use

Concern over rogue Letting Agencies

The National Private Tenants Organisation (NPTO) has called for mandatory licensing of letting agencies.
The Chairperson of NPTO said “Viewers of the recent Channel 5 Cowboy Traders programme will have been
appalled at the treatment of private tenants by a letting agency in Lancashire. In the programme there
were numerous cases of dangerous and unhealthy conditions endured by private tenants.” The most recent
Government survey of private landlords showed that only 6% of landlords were members of a relevant
professional body and 15% of letting agencies did not belong to any professional body1.

“Cases involving rogue letting agencies brought to the attention of our organisation include: a young
family being told by a letting agency that the agency was not responsible for the repair of dangerous
electrical sockets, tenants deposits being unfairly withheld and Energy Performance Certificates not
being provided.” A fraudulent letting agency in Oxford was prosecuted and fined in February 2012 under
the Proceeds of Crime Act in relation to tenants' deposits2.

NPTO has called for all letting agencies to join a professional body such as the Government backed
National Approved Letting Scheme and the Property Ombudsman (Lettings) scheme.  NPTO campaigns for
professionally managed, secure, decent and affordable private rented homes in sustainable communities.
The Secretary of NPTO said “It is high time that rogue landlords and rogue letting agencies are stopped
from blighting private tenants lives.”

Notes for editors:

1. For further information please email enquiries@npto.org.uk. Please visit the NPTO website at http://www.npto.btck.co.uk for further information. Follow NPTO on Twitter @nptorg.
2. Details of the Channel 5 Cowboy Traders programme can be found at:
http://www.channel5.com/shows/cowboy-traders/suppliers/suppliers-landlords

References

1. DCLG Private Landlords Survey 2010 http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/statistics/pdf/2010380.pdf
2. http://www.thedisputeservice.co.uk/latest-news/
tenancy-deposit-scheme-welcomes-tough-sentence-for-fraudulent-letting-agent.html

Call for evidence on electrical safety problems

NPTO is calling for evidence from private tenants on problems with electrical installations (wiring etc) and appliances in their homes.
A campaign is to be launched soon on electrical safety in the private rented sector. The Electrical Safety Council has reported that private tenants are disproportionately affected by electric shocks in their homes and that more one fifth of all private tenants already report concerns with electrical safety in their home (Source: http://www.esc.org.uk, 05/03/2012).

NPTO responds to more consultations on selective licensing

The NPTO has responded as a stakeholder to the Hyndburn Borough Council consulation on selective licensing.

Text alerts, Twitter and Facebook

If you would like to receive text alerts when news items are added please email your mobile phone number to: enquiries@npto.org.uk with the subject line 'Text Alerts'. Follow NPTO on Twitter @NPTOrg and visit NPTO on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/pages/National-Private-Tenants-Organisation/178280625594903

Press release on the launch of the NPTO

Click here to read the press release released to mark to the launch of the National Private Tenants Organisation.

NPTO welcomed in Parliament

The formation of the National Private Tenants Organisation was welcomed in the House of Commons on 14th September 2011 by Graham Jones MP, who said the following:

"Last week, tenants in privately rented homes came together to form the national private tenants organisation, a move that
I warmly welcome. It certainly has my support. They deserve the attention of the Minister for Housing and Local Government."

 

NPTO participates in the DECC Working Group on the proposed Green Deal

A representative from the NPTO was invited to become a member of the Department of Energy and Climate Change Working Group on Green Deal consent barriers and retaliatory evictions.


This page was last updated 13th September 2013