News In Focus
Bill to raise standard of private rented housing published
Government plans to raise the standard of private rented housing in Scotland have been unveiled by Housing and Communities Minister Alex Neil.
The Private Rented Housing (Scotland) Bill aims to improve the law regulating private landlords and give councils more powers to tackle bad landlords.
Landlords will also be required to provide information on tenants' rights and responsibilities.
The maximum fines for the worst offending landlords will increase from £5,000 to £50,000. Courts will also be given power to ban convicted landlords for up to five years.
There will be a crackdown on unscrupulous agents charging extortionate, unlawful premiums, and a comprehensive review of the current landlord registration system will be undertaken to see what further improvements can be made.
Mr Neil said: “Good, lawful landlords have nothing to fear from this Bill. This Government wants to encourage a vibrant and responsive Scottish private rented sector, which provides good quality and well-managed accommodation.
“I see the private rented sector as more important than ever in providing good quality accommodation given the economic challenges that face the public sector.”
Other parts of the bill deal with houses in multiple occupation, and powers to control overcrowding in private rented housing.
Click here to access the bill.