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Action taken over dangerous privately rented accommodation

Published on Wednesday, 4th September 2019

A complaint was recently received by the Council’s Private Sector Housing Team from Warwickshire Police Safer Neighbourhoods Team

Three privately rented flats on Edward Street, Nuneaton were causing significant anti-social behaviour and were also in poor condition, a joint inspection on Thursday 22 August 2019 highlighted unsafe conditions which presented an imminent risk of serious harm to the occupiers and visitors.  The Council therefore served Emergency Prohibition Orders on two of the flats the following day. Both flats had dangerous electrics and had a lack of heating/hot water and kitchen facilities. The effect of the Prohibition Orders meant that to protect health and safety, the tenants were required to leave and the owner must complete essential safety works before the properties can be re-let. The tenants were directed to the Councils Housing Solutions Team to provide advice and assistance on finding alternative accommodation. This power is rarely used but the circumstances and threat to safety meant it was the most appropriate action to take.

Conditions in another flat also presented a serious risk to the occupier from dangerous electrics. The Council organised a contractor to rectify the hazards the next day for which the owner will be billed for. Further Improvements to the flat which are deemed less urgent will be sought over the coming weeks. Conditions generally in the three flats were unacceptable and were also negatively impacting the community.

Chris Watkins, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities issued the following comment:

“The Private Rented Sector plays a key role in meeting our housing need and the standard of the Sector is of paramount importance to tenant’s physical and mental wellbeing. "Rented properties which do not meet the minimum legal safety standards and which pose a risk to tenants or our community will not be tolerated in our Borough.

"The Council is equipped to deal with serious risks to protect our resident’s safety and whilst we have a great relationship with the majority of landlords in the Borough who act responsibly, we will not hesitate to take action against those who fail to manage their properties. I hope this swift action sends a strong message to tenants needing assistance with their rented property and the wider community that if they report properties in poor condition, the Council will be able to act."

If you wish to report concerns please email the Private Sector Housing Team at privatesectorhousing@nuneatonandbedworth.gov.uk or alternatively contact Customer Services on 02476 376376. More information is also available on our website.