Private housing policies and performance

Private Housing Enforcement Policy

The Private Housing Enforcement Policy 2016 (pdf, 88k) (opens new window) sets out how the Private Housing Service will use its enforcement powers.

Draft Civil Penalty Policy

The Housing and Planning Act 2016 has given councils new powers to deal with rogue landlords. These include Civil Penalty Notices (pdf, 206k) (opens new window)  (opens new window) (CPNs). 

The government has defined a ‘rogue landlord’ as ‘a landlord who knowingly flouts their obligations by renting out unsafe and substandard accommodation to tenants'.

The Department for Communities and Local Government has issued statutory guidance that the Council must take into account before using these powers. 

We’ve considered this guidance and, as a result, we’re going to change the way we do some things in order to use these new powers as effectively as possible.

This is our draft policy (pdf, 206k) (opens new window) setting out how we will determine the level of financial penalty in individual cases, once the decision to impose a Civil Penalty Notice has been made. 

Before publishing the final policy, we're seeking views from all interested parties, including landlords, agents and tenants. The survey will remain open until midnight on 7 July 2017.

Complete the survey online

Private Housing Policy statement

This includes:

  • Private rented sector, how we seek to improve standards within the private rented sector in Bristol.
  • Homeowners, the policy for providing support to homeowners.
  • Empty Homes, the policy for the action we take in response to the empty homes that exist within Bristol.

Property licensing - fit and proper policy

Under the Housing Act 2004, if the Council is to issue a selective licence, an additional HMO licence or a mandatory HMO licence we must be satisfied that the proposed licence holder is a fit and proper person and the most appropriate person to hold the licence. 

We must also be satisfied that the proposed manager of the house is a fit and proper person to be the manager of the house. If not, the licence must be refused unless other arrangements can be agreed.

This Property licensing - fit and proper policy (pdf, 76k) (opens new window) sets out how we make that decision.

Enforcement Policy for the Housing Health and Safety Hazard Rating System

Bristol City Council is required to use the Health and Housing Health and Safety Hazard Rating System (HHSRS) as the basis for tackling the worst housing conditions.

This document sets out how the we should use these enforcement powers to ensure safe and healthy environments in Bristol's private housing.

Regulatory Services Enforcement Policy

The primary function of local government regulatory activity is to protect the public, the environment and groups such as consumers, residents and tenants, workers and businesses.

The Enforcement Policy helps to promote efficient and effective approaches to regulatory inspection and enforcement, which improve regulatory outcomes without imposing unnecessary burdens on business and others subject to regulation.

Regulators' Code

Nearly all regulators, including local authorities, must have regard to the Regulators’ Code when carrying out their activities.

In the Private Housing Service we will ensure we follow the code when developing polices, operations procedures and when we undertake our regulatory activities.

Performance

We have published a set of clear service standards, setting out what those we regulate should expect from us.

We will publish details of our performance against our service standards, including feedback received from those we regulate and data relating to complaints about us and appeals against our decisions.

This will be published annually, and will be available on this page shortly.

Financial assistance for private landlords

We offer loans to private landlords to help with necessary improvements to meet licensing standards or to improve energy efficiency, in privately rented properties. See the Financial Assistance Schedule.