Tenants left living in squalor in Britain as landlords escape heavy fines

December 31, 2023

Woman holding her hands in front of her face and looking at black mold near cabinets.
Source: Andrey Popov | Getty Images

The Guardian used data from Violation Tracker UK to show how some landlords were paying tiny fines despite allowing residents to live in squalor, despite repeatedly being flagged about the problems:

Leading private providers of social housing in Britain have been made to pay out only a few hundred pounds on average in financial penalties for severely mistreating tenants, the Observer can reveal.

An analysis of every decision made by the housing ombudsman, the primary regulator of social housing in Britain, shows that across the 2,907 rulings it made in the past three years, the average financial penalty for housing associations was just £445.

Housing associations are privately owned nonprofit companies that run 63% of social housing in the UK. They have recently come under increasing scrutiny and the number of complaints about serious disrepair have skyrocketed in the aftermath of the mould-related death of toddler Awaab Ishak in December 2020…

“Our data shows that tenants are getting a raw deal across the board, with very little regulation of the housing sector taking place,” said Maia Kirby of Good Jobs First, a nonprofit that focuses on corporate accountability.

Read the full story at The Guardian.