Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : London renters use Mayor’s tools half a million times to protect themselves from rogue landlords [November 2022]

The press release issued by the Mayor of London on 22 November 2022.

  • New figures show the Mayor’s Rogue Landlord and Agent Checker has now been used 388,000 times since 2017, and his Property Licence Checker, launched in November 2020, has been accessed 125,000 times
  • The checkers have been viewed 128,000 times in the last year alone as many of London’s renters grapple with soaring rents and poor standards
  • 6,000 Londoners have now reported concerns about their rental property through the Mayor’s Report a Rogue tool
  • Renters who find their landlord is at fault could be due a refund of up to 12 months’ rent – over £28,000 based on current average advertised rents
  • Sadiq wants the Government to follow his lead and come good on promise to roll out a National Rogue Landlord Database

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has praised London renters for using his innovative online renting tools to stand up for their rights in the turbulent and unpredictable London rental market – and urged the Government to follow his lead and roll them out nationally.

The Mayor’s Rogue Landlord and Agent Checker, a unique database that ‘names and shames’ landlords and lettings agents who have been successfully prosecuted or have faced civil enforcement action for housing offences, has now been used more than 388,000 times. Meanwhile, his Property Licence Checker, launched in November 2020 to allow Londoners to find out if their rental property is properly licenced, has been accessed more than 125,000 times. The checkers empower London’s renters to make informed decisions about who they rent from.

The checkers have been viewed 128,000 times in the last year alone as many of London’s renters grapple with soaring rents and poor standards.

Further new stats from City Hall show that more than 6,000 Londoners have now used the Mayor’s Report a Rogue tool, launched in autumn 2017, to report concerns or problems with a rental property or landlord directly to enforcement teams in the relevant borough. The borough can then take action against the landlord or agent where necessary. An example of where this has been successful is in Camden. Following a referral through the report a rogue tool, Camden council obtained London’s first rogue landlord banning order. The landlord’s details are now on the rogue landlord and agent checker.

These usage figures show how concerned Londoners are about the condition of the properties they are renting and the credentials of the people they are renting from.

The Mayor has repeatedly called on Ministers to do more to stand up for the rights of renters. This should start with the establishment of a National Rogue Landlord Database, as was promised in the Renters Reform Bill. Sadiq also wants the amount that tenants can claim back if their home isn’t up to scratch doubled – to two years’ worth of rent – for the worst properties, which pose a risk of death or serious injury. For London tenants paying the average rent of £2,343 a month, this could mean a pay-out of up to £56,000. Nearly a fifth of privately rented homes (18 per cent) fail the Government’s Decent Homes standard.

Renters would feel more secure raising complaints about the condition of their property if they didn’t face the threat of arbitrary eviction, which is why the Mayor has long called for Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions to be finally abolished too.

Last week the Mayor convened a landmark City Hall summit of private renters, charities, advocates and politicians after it was revealed that 40 per cent of Londoners think they will struggle to meet their rent payments in the next six months.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “I’m determined to continue standing up for London’s renters by cracking down on rogue landlords. London’s 2.6m private renters deserve a decent home at an affordable price, let from a fair and honest landlord. The fact that my online tools to root out unscrupulous behaviour of landlords have been used hundreds of thousands of times is a sad indictment of the state of the London rental sector. However, I am pleased to see tenants using these tools to help them avoid dodgy landlords and to stand up for themselves when they are being mistreated or misled.

“If we are to continue building a better London for everyone, it’s essential that we continue to stand up for and empower renters. We’re doing everything we can in London, but we also need the Government to step up. This must include creating the long-promised National Rogue Landlord database, properly funding borough enforcement teams and increasing the fines for landlords who break the rules.”

David Beach, Director of Enforcement at Waltham Forest, said: “The private rented sector is incredibly important in Waltham Forest. We work to ensure that the thousands of residents who rent from private landlords are living in homes that are properly maintained and free from significant building hazards.

“Our private sector housing and licensing officers make routine use of the Mayor’s Rogue Landlord and Agent Checker in their work. Information on the Checker detailing enforcement actions undertaken by other local authorities is invaluable in supporting the administration and enforcement of Waltham Forest’s large-scale property licensing schemes. Data is used to prioritise proactive inspections of any homes linked to landlords who have been subject to enforcement action elsewhere and to ensure penalties that we impose take into account any previous offending.

“Waltham Forest also receives reports from tenants via the ‘Report a Rogue Tool’ and our enforcement officers visit the properties to assess conditions, taking any necessary enforcement action to improve sub-standard housing conditions.”

Cllr Meric Apak, Camden Cabinet Member for Better Homes, said: “In Camden around a third of our residents rent from private landlords. We believe that they deserve to live in properly regulated and safe homes, and we stand up for renters who are mistreated.

“Our work has led the way in protecting renters – having been the first borough to secure a banning order against a rogue landlord, we have worked in partnership with the Mayor of London to register more than fifty landlords on the Rogue Landlord Checker.

“It is a service that has empowered renters, helping them to avoid and report rouge landlords. It has supported our Rogue Landlord Taskforce in their work to investigate rogue landlords and to improve standards in the private sector but crucially, it is also backing good and honest landlords to continue running successful businesses.”