Tenants living in sub-standard accommodation will be given the right to sue their landlords if a new Bill gets through Parliament.
MP Karen Buck’s Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill is due to have its second reading today.
It seeks to resurrect a law passed in 1885 and last amended in 1957.
This gives tenants the right to a home fit for human habitation, if the rent was less than £52 a year (£80 in London).
Successive governments have come under pressure to scrap the archaic rent limits, but have failed to act, meaning that the law has fallen into disuse.
Buck’s new Bill would require private rental accommodation to be provided and maintained in a state fit for human habitation.
It would give tenants the right to bypass councils if they want their properties repaired.
The Bill would protect landlords if the damage was caused by the tenant or by natural forces.
The Bill, which would amend the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, would apply in England.
A useful research note is here