Council chiefs in Rotherham are taking action against 21 landlords who have not yet signed up to its ‘selective licensing scheme’ in four parts of the town.
Landlords in Eastwood, Masbrough, Dinnington and part of Maltby are required to register with the council to receive a licence showing that they are abiding by a list of conditions.
Their properties will also be subject to inspections.
There are 450 landlords involved in the scheme, with 850 properties now subject to regular checks.
Advisory Cabinet Member for Housing, Councillor Emma Wallis, said: “The Selective Licensing scheme is intended to drive up the quality of private rented housing in those areas where it applies.
“It is designed to improve the lives of tenants and their local communities.
“There are many good landlords in the private sector of course but our aim is to drive up standards and, where we find faults, we will take action.”
The first inspections started in November and a number of issues have been identified in properties, including a lack of adequate fire detection systems and inefficient heating.
Landlords of 90 properties were unable to demonstrate their properties had safe gas appliances.
Coun Wallis said: “These are not minor issues – in some instances people’s lives have been put at risk. It is our priority to ensure that vulnerable tenants are kept safe by targeting the landlords who are failing to carry out their proper duties.”
Failing to license a house or breaching the conditions of licences can also result in a range of penalties being imposed by magistrates, including fines, rent repayment orders and management order.
Not only are property owners liable to legal action but anyone else in control of managing the property, including letting agents.
More information visit www.rotherham.gov.uk/landlordlicensing