29% of Bristol’s rented homes fail the decent home standard

25 October 2012

A mouldy ceiling

Shelter is calling on Bristol’s Mayoral candidates to make a public commitment to crack down on landlords who rent out properties in states of disrepair.

More than 39,000 homes in Bristol are privately rented, and almost a third of them (29.3%) fail the decent home standard.

This means that they are either not in a fit state of repair, do not have modern facilities or are not adequately heated. One fifth of tenants (21.6%) have reported that their landlord does not respond to repair requests.

The numbers of complaints about landlords in Bristol have doubled in the last three years, with more than 500 complaints in 2011/12 alone*.

With Bristol's Mayoral election only weeks away, Shelter is taking over a property opposite College Green in Bristol from Thurs 25-Sat 27 October.

Bristol residents are invited to visit the pop-up letting agency to get housing advice, sign the petition, find out how they can report a rogue landlord, and convince local politicians to make housing their top priority.

Karen MacVean, Shelter’s Bristol advice service manager said:

‘Every day people who are living in the most appalling conditions come to us for help because they can’t get their landlords to take action.

‘No one should have to live in homes with damp, mould, no heating and life-threatening hazards, but across Bristol rogue landlords are letting out properties that are simply not fit for anyone to live in.’

‘For people on lower incomes, moving out just isn’t an option – they’ll only be faced with similar conditions elsewhere. We must show rogue landlords that they won’t be tolerated, so that everyone in the city can have a decent place to call home.’

Actor James Redmond is supporting the campaign. He said: 

‘As a landlord myself I know that the relationship between a tenant and a landlord works both ways, and I take my responsibility to provide a decent home to families very seriously.

‘Bristol has a huge number of young renters, some of whom have families have their own, and no landlord should let out properties they wouldn’t be happy to live in themselves.

‘Rogue landlords can ruin people’s lives, so I’m supporting Shelter’s campaign as I’d like to see the new Mayor stamp out rotten homes, and help give renters a decent place to call home.’

Join Shelter’s campaign against Bristol's Rotten Homes

Figures quoted are from the Bristol Private Sector House Condition Survey, 2011.

*Number of complaints calculated from Shelter's Freedom of Information request to all English local authorities, July 2012.