We now have a new Act that supports our sector’s ambition of good quality housing for all

Today, Karen Buck MP’s Fitness for Human Habitation Act comes into force. This important piece of legislation gives renters the right to take action if their property is not fit for habitation.

Juss Mullins is Public Affairs Officer at the National Housing Federation

Juss Mullins is Public Affairs Officer at the National Housing Federation

20 March 2019

We see this new legislation as a real milestone in the journey to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to live in a good quality home – something that’s at the core of our sector’s Ambition to Deliver.

What’s changed under the new Act?

The Act will improve standards for renters across the country and strengthen their voices.

In a long overdue measure, landlords across the private and social rented sectors are now legally obligated to ensure that their homes are fit for human habitation, and tenants have the power to take legal action against their landlord to enforce this.

The Act has also updated and expanded the definition of what makes a home ‘fit for habitation’.

We’ve published a summary of the changes, and what they mean for housing associations.

This has been an important campaign led by backbench MP Karen Buck, who first introduced the issue in a Private Members’ Bill in 2015. We supported it as a bill, and we’re delighted it has now come into law.

It’s a great step that strikes at the core of what housing associations’ ambition – that everyone in this country can live in a good quality home at a price they can afford.


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