A flagship Government database to keep track of rogue landlords has registered just 21 names in the nearly two years since its launch, This is Money can reveal.
Data obtained through a Freedom of Information Act to the Ministry of Housing revealed that 21 rogue landlords or property agents had been submitted by 15 local authorities since the database’s launch in April 2018.
At the time of its launch, the database was heralded as a key weapon in the fight against serious criminal landlords.
Despite this, there are currently just 22 entries on the database covering 21 landlords or property agents. The 22 entries on the database cover 38 offences, submitted by a total of 15 local authorities.
There are three entries on, the database for banning orders, 15 entries for criminal convictions for banning order offences, and four entries for individuals with two or more civil penalties within 12 months.
The Ministry of Housing said: ‘The database is targeted at only the very worst and persistent offenders, those who have committed banning order offences. It takes time to secure convictions or civil penalty notices for offences that may be recorded on the database.
‘The offence must have been committed after 6 April 2018, the landlord or agent must have been prosecuted and convicted, and the appeals process must be completed. The local authority can then apply to the First-tier Tribunal for a banning order and a hearing must be scheduled.
‘When a banning order has been imposed, the local authority must record it on the database.’
The derisory figures will come as a blow to the Housing Ministry, which is currently deciding whether to open up its register to the general public for the first time.
When this was announced the then-Secretary of State for Housing James Brokenshire said: ‘This database has the potential to ensure that the worst landlords are banned and it is right that we unlock this crucial information for new tenants.’
Last year the Housing Ministry consulted on whether to widen the scope of the register to include less serious offenders.
It explored whether offences such as engaging in a prohibited unfair commercial practice, charging tenants an unfair fee, failing to belong to a redress scheme, or failing to deal with pests such as mice or rats, should warrant a listing on the register.
The consultation closed in October and the Government says it is currently analysing feedback.
The Government recently announced a £4million cash injection for local councils to help crackdown on rogue landlords.
Over 100 councils across England are set to receive the money, a portion of which will be used to trial smartphone apps, automated tenant complaints systems, and technology ‘to identify particularly cold homes’, the Ministry of Housing announced last month.
The move comes as part of a wider package of measures from government rolled out over the past 12 months, which take aim at landlords who break the law by providing cramped and unsafe housing.
Source: Daily Mail
Author: Will Kirkman
Date: 7th of February 2020