The Private Sector Housing team offers advice, assistance and support to all tenants. This includes tenants of private landlords and Housing Associations. 

Tenant information pack

The council has produced a tenant’s information pack that is aimed to help you throughout your tenancy.

Repairs

If your home has items of disrepair you should contact your landlord to let them know that you have a problem. Your landlord will need to visit to have a look. Also, he may send a tradesman to give him an estimate to put things right.

If your problem doesn’t get fixed in a reasonable amount of time you should contact your landlord again. If your landlord continues not to do the work then you should contact the Private Sector Housing team by email or by phone: 01727 819447.

It is the landlord’s responsibility to make sure that your home is a safe and healthy place to live. Properties are assessed using the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) .

If you contact the council about your home an officer from the team will visit. If there are things that are of cause for concern we will write to your landlord. 

The council’s approach to enforcing housing standards can be found in its enforcement policy.

Damp and mould

If you are experiencing damp and mould problems you may find information in the council's damp and mould leaflet helpful. If your problems persist then you should contact the Private Sector Housing team.

Deposits

If you have paid a deposit to your landlord it should have been paid into an approved government scheme

Gas Safety

If your home has gas appliances your landlord will need to get a new Landlords Gas Test Certificate every year. These can only be provided by a Gas Safe Registered engineer

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC)

When an agent or owner advertises a property to let, they are required to have an EPC. This gives a property a score based on how energy efficient it is. The average score in the area is around 55. A score below 37 will indicate that the property may be cold and difficult to heat. EPCs are valid for ten years.

Overcrowding

You may consider your accommodation is too small for your household and that you may be living in overcrowded conditions. The Housing Act 1985 states the room sizes that are considered acceptable for the number of occupants within a household. For further information visit Shelter.

Electrical safety

It is good practice to have the electrical installation checked every 10 years.

Tenant obligations

Your landlord must give you at least 24 hours notice that he wants to come and visit your home. This can be by text, in writing or via a phone call. If the proposed time is not convenient you should suggest another more convenient time.

Housing Benefit

You can find more information about this by contacting the council’s housing benefit’s team

Advice

You may find the following sources of advice useful

http://www.shelter.org.uk/
http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/housing_e.htm

Date of last review: 20 January 2014