Crit­ter in­fes­ta­tion mis­ery for 68,000 pri­vate ten­ants

One in ten have been plagued in the last year alone, sur­vey claims

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS -

The Shel­ter and YouGov poll re­vealed that bad liv­ing con­di­tions are rife in rented homes, with al­most half of ten­ants (47 per cent) in the South East re­port­ing that they had ex­pe­ri­enced prob­lems with poor con­di­tions or dis­re­pair in the last year.

Over a third of pri­vate renters sur­veyed by the char­ity said they had lived in a prop­erty with damp or mould (34 per cent), al­most a quar­ter suf­fered with poor in­su­la­tion and ex­cess cold (24 per cent), while elec­tri­cal haz­ards were re­ported by 10 per cent of renters.

Last year, al­most 6,000 pri­vate ten­ants called the Shel­ter helpline and nearly 400,000 peo­ple vis­ited the web­site for ex­pert ad­vice on con­di­tions or dis­re­pair in their homes.

The find­ings fol­low re­cent gov­ern­ment statis­tics show­ing that one in six pri­vately rented homes in England con­tain a health and safety hazard.

The hous­ing char­ity is warn­ing that huge num­bers of ten­ants are stuck in homes which are not fit for pur­pose, of­ten not know­ing their rights or where to go for sup­port and ad­vice.

Shel­ter helpline ad­viser Nadeem Khan said: “Ev­ery day at Shel­ter we speak to peo­ple des­per­ate for help, af­ter be­ing forced to live in ap­palling con­di­tions for months on end.

“Some of the hous­ing hor­rors we hear are truly shock­ing – from peo­ple who are forced to live in flats crawl­ing with fleas or rats, or with wa­ter pour­ing out of the toi­let waste pipe, to those who’ve been through the or­deal of a fire in their home caused by faulty wiring.”

Shel­ter’s chief ex­ec­u­tive Camp­bell Robb said: “It’s shock­ing that renters in the South East are stuck liv­ing in prop­er­ties rid­dled with prob­lems, of­ten pay­ing sky-high rents for the priv­i­lege.

“The gov­ern­ment must do more to pro­tect renters from the rogue land­lords who let out th­ese shoddy prop­er­ties, so that ev­ery renter can feel safe in their own home.”

Rats and cock­roaches are among com­mon un­wanted


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