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Private Landlords Regulator

Volume 645: debated on Monday 23 July 2018

22. Whether he plans to introduce a regulator of private landlords; and if he will make statement. (906594)

We are determined to crack down on the small number of rogue landlords—that includes banning the most serious offenders from letting properties. The database of rogue landlords and property agents supports local authority enforcement action. We have committed to requiring private landlords to join a mandatory redress scheme.

I have an indirect interest in this question, as my wife is a private landlord. Selective licensing schemes are good as far as they go, but a side effect is that they force bad landlords elsewhere. Therefore, whether we have a regulator or not, the answer, as outlined in my private Member’s Bill, is a national register of private landlords and licensing scheme to ensure that they provide the good-quality homes that people deserve. I know from working with Ron Hogg, Durham’s police and crime commissioner, of the effect that rogue private landlords have on local communities. Will the Secretary of State meet us both to discuss the need for a more robust approach to registration and licensing, both locally and nationally?

I am more than happy to meet the hon. Gentleman to discuss the issues he raises, but I carefully suggest to him that this House has to strike a balance between bureaucracy and regulation—the two are often very different.