The Housing and Planning Act 2016 amended the Housing Act 2004 to provide an alternative to prosecution of any offences as outline in the 2004 Act. The amendments allow a civil penalty to be imposed by a local housing authority. The amount is to be determined by the local housing authority with a maximum set at £30,000.
The proposed charging system therefore specifies a civil penalty of £5,000 for a first offence rising to £30,000 depending on the circumstances of the case. The consultation is taking place to receive your views on the proposed charges to view the full consultation please see here.
For example, a landlord with no previous convictions who failed to comply with an improvement notice where the tenant was vulnerable or significant harm occurred as result of housing conditions, would receive a basic penalty of £5,000 with a £2,500 premium because of the impact on the tenant. If the landlord could demonstrate their income was less than £440 per week the £7,500 penalty would be reduced by 50%. If the landlord repeated the offence the basic penalty would be £15,000 plus £2,500 impact premium.
At the upper end of the range of penalties, a landlord who failed to obtain a licence for a house in multiple occupation would receive a basic penalty of £10,000 for a first offence, and a second offence would attract a penalty of £30,000, with a 50% reduction for income below £440 in either case.