MP Criticised for Comments on New Housing Bill Proposal
A Conservative MP has been criticised for making comments about a new housing law proposal that would see landlords legally obliged to make homes fit for human habitation.
Philip Davies, MP for Shipley, said the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill – proposed by Labour MP Karen Buck – is unnecessary, after it was presented to Parliament on Friday (16th October 2015).
If passed, the bill will revive a law from 1885 that has been considered outdated for almost 60 years, during which time rents have spiralled.
The law states that tenants have the right to a home that is fit for human habitation, as long as the rent is less than £52 per year or £80 in London. These limits were last revised in 1957.
Buck explained that the current law requires landlords to fix properties when they fall into disrepair, but they do not have to solve issues such as condensation or mould.
Davies said the new bill would be “a huge burden on landlords”.
He continued: “My contention would be… I don’t think this particular bill is necessary to achieve what I would like to see. [It’s] as if [landlords] have nothing else to do but wade through legislation generated by this House.
“The overwhelming majority of landlords, and I will put myself in this category, want to do the right thing and wouldn’t ever dream of renting out a property that isn’t in a fit state to be rented out and want to comply with every regulation that’s introduced.”1