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The Housing Renewals Policy is currently under review and the only funding available at this time is a Vacant Homes Loan to assist owners of empty properties to bring them back into use in the private rented sector.
Under certain circumstances, the council may be able to offer Landlord Renewals Assistance – Tenanted Properties, where a tenanted property is in very poor condition and where there rent paid is significantly lower than market rent. These are likely to be regulated tenancies where the tenancy started before 15 January 1989.
To encourage people who own homes to rent out their spare rooms, the government has developed the rent a room scheme. Any income received under the scheme is tax free as long as:
You can choose not to join the scheme and can pay tax on all the rent, and then claim certain expenses (such as agent’s fees, repairs and gas/water bills).
If you decide to rent out your home, you need to understand all of the responsibilities that you will take on as a landlord. These include:
You may also need to get permission from your mortgage lender to use the property in this way. You should have a written contract between you and your tenant, which sets out the legal terms and conditions of the tenancy.
The Cheshire Landlord Accreditation Scheme (CLAS) is a voluntary scheme developed by officers from Warrington, Cheshire East, and Cheshire West and Chester to ensure that landlord standards are consistent across the county.
Check out the CLAS code of standards. If you meet the criteria and are interested in joining the voluntary scheme, use our application forms.
The Landlord Forum provides an opportunity to spread awareness of the landlord’s legal obligations and good practice and for the council to engage with landlords on any related matters including policy changes.
The Landlord Forum started in January 2002 and meets twice a year at the Gateway, Sankey Street. A landlord newsletter is also published twice a year and is circulated to landlords.
All landlords operating in the Warrington area are welcome to attend the landlord forum. Please contact the private sector housing team by calling 01925 248482 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
There are several private sector landlord associations that can assist and support landlords to comply with their legal requirements.
There are considerable legal requirements for companies or individuals who choose to operate in the private rented sector.
These requirements can relate to property conditions, rental agreements, tenancy deposit protection, and compliance with legislative requirements of furniture and gas and electric appliances are provided in the property.
You can find details of the legal requirements for landlords on the Gov website at gov.uk/renting-out-a-property
The council's Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy details our approach to enforcement in the private rented sector and how we deal with private landlords after receiving service requests from tenants about their living conditions.
Possible enforcement actions include:
The Smoke and Carbon Monoxide (England) Regulations 2015 came into effect from 1 October 2015. All private landlords need to provide a smoke alarm on each floor level of their rented properties as well as a carbon monoxide alarm in a room containing a solid fuel burning appliance. Where these are not provided, the Council must serve a Remedial Notice giving them 28 days to fit the device(s). If this is not complied with, the Council must arrange for the devices to be fitted and serve the landlord with a fixed penalty notice. The penalty charge can be up to £5,000 and a reduction can be given for early settlement of the charge. Each local authority must publish its regime for penalty charges.
Smoke alarms can be purchased for approximately £8 and carbon monoxide detectors for approximately £13. This is a very small outlay for landlords, smoke alarms help to protect their property and both alarms protect tenants’ lives.
The Council can now serve civil penalties as an alternative to prosecution in certain cases where there are offences under the Housing Act 2004. In addition civil penalties are available for non-compliance with the Electrical Safety Standards in the Private Rented Sector (England) Regulations 2020. The Council’s policy on civil penalties can be found here.
It is now a legal requirement for all lettings agents and property managers in England to belong to a Government approved redress scheme.
You may get a fine of up to £5,000 if you breach the Order.
The approved schemes are: