To ensure that tenants living in the private rented sector are able to access a safe, decent and affordable home and live their lives with confidence and without harassment.
What we will do
- Publish a Norwich private renter’s charter – which sets out the responsibilities and standards that private landlords and agents must meet; the rights of tenants and the condition of the property that should be expected; so the tenants can live safely and confidently in their home. This will empower tenants and help support the raising of standards within the sector.
- Provide good quality information to tenants on their rights.
- Explore the development an enhanced Norwich standard for private rented properties that sets out to raise the standard of rented properties. This will set a higher standard for the condition and fixtures tenants can expect within a private rented home. This will be an enhanced standard which exceeds what is prescribed by legislation and which is at least on par with the council’s Norwich standard for its own housing stock. This would be developed on consultation with tenants, landlords, agencies and landlord associations.
- Create a tenancy relations role - who will provide help and support to tenants with advice to take action against landlords where this is required and enhance landlord knowledge in the private rented sector. This will be resourced by an additional post of private sector tenant liaison officer. The post holder will also liaise and share information with advice organisations in the VCSE sector.
- Take enforcement action against landlords who break the law. To ensure that the council has access to and able to assess all relevant information, a new role of private sector housing intelligence officer will be established to ensure that action is taken to address hazards in the poorest performing dwellings. This role will increase the capacity in the team that enforces compliance with this legalisation by improving our data and intelligence gathering capacity and increasing our activity to prosecute landlords who break the law.
- Joining up our work within the council – across all the teams that work with private renters. It is important that all teams that work with tenants living in the private rented sector and who have concerns about the conditions of a property or where tenants are at risk of eviction are working together effectively and efficiently.
- Liaison with landlords – the council will continue to work closely with landlords that meet or are willing to meet the requirements of the Norwich charter.
- Lobbying government – local government cannot resolve the issues within the private rented sector alone and Government action is also required. The council will continue to lobby Government for a better deal for private renters.
- Communication - provide clear and concise information to tenants and landlords about their respective rights and responsibilities, using digital and interactive information that is easy to read.
- Consultation – see the views of stakeholders on the Norwich private renters’ charter