A NEW guide to help private landlords improve standards in Stockton Borough has been launched.


The Stockton Rental Standard is a quick and easy guide which outlines the legal and best practises expected of all private landlords.


Stockton Council has developed the Stockton Rental Standard as part of a range of measures to drive up standards of all private rental properties across the Borough. Over the coming weeks the Council’s Private Sector Housing Team will be distributing a copy to private landlords.  A copy will also available to download from the Council’s website.


In addition to the Stockton Rental Standard the Council encourages private landlords within the Borough to take advantage of additional free services available to them such as the Landlord Accreditation Scheme and the Tenant Referencing Service.


A confidential helpline has also been introduced for private sector housing tenants.  Private rented tenants who may be fearful about reporting poor housing conditions or tenancy management are encouraged to ring 01642 528232.


Councillor Steve Nelson, Stockton Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing and Community, said: “We fully recognise that the majority of private landlords in the Borough are good landlords who offer a good standard of both property and management.  Most landlords are willing to work in partnership with us and we want to continue this positive relationship.


“However we know there are some landlords who do not fully understand their legal obligations. This is why we offer free support and have produced the Stockton Rental Standard – to help all private landlords achieve the highest standards and to make sure our residents can expect to live in good quality, well managed homes.


“We also expect landlords to work with us and our partners to prevent issues like anti-social behaviour from occurring.”


As part of its plan to improve standards in the private rented housing sector, the Council has recently set up a multi-agency team. This team will take robust action against rogue landlords who flout their responsibilities.


For more information about the support available to private landlords visitwww.stockton.gov.uk/privatelandlords