Private rented housing - what to expect from your landlord

We work with the private rented sector to improve housing conditions for occupying tenants and support landlords to keep their properties in good condition.

The main area of work involves housing that is rented from a private landlord and includes family homes, flats, bedsits, shared houses and hostels.

There are minimum standards that apply to all housing.

The aim of these standards is to ensure homes are safe to live in, warm, energy efficient and do not cause harm or illness to the occupiers. The Housing Act 2004 gives us powers to enforce these minimum standards.

In general, any room, flat or house that is offered for letting should:

  • be clean and in good repair
  • be sufficiently spacious for the number of occupants
  • be provided with sufficient clean furniture and fixtures/fittings as described for the letting (furnished/unfurnished/part furnished)
  • be free from hazards to health and safety
  • shared facilities should be sufficient for the occupants who use them
  • have a written contract/tenancy agreement
  • have an inventory so you know what is provided (for your deposit return)
  • have a current Gas Safety Certificate
  • be provided with smoke alarms 
  • be well managed

What to expect from your landlord

Landlords must make sure accommodation meets the minimum standards. We have the power to take action against landlords who let property which is below the standard.

Our Good Practice Guide (PDF) contains useful and practical advice on complying with the standards required by law for rented accommodation. 

How to complain about your rented home

If you are worried about your security of tenure or have concerns about being harassed or evicted, then talking to the Housing Advice Team will help you to understand your rights.

Contact them on 01234 718058 or read more about how to make a complaint.

When the Housing Advice Team receives a complaint you can expect to be visited and the premises checked for defects. Your landlord will be asked to do whatever work is needed to bring your home up to a decent standard.

Sometimes we will take enforcement action against landlords who will not do the required repairs.

If you are unhappy with the standard of your rented home - such as issues with disrepair - please email or call on 01234 718099.