The Council encourages owners to keep their homes in good repair. However, it needs to be recognised that, as a last resort, there may be a need for enforcement action to deal with properties that fall below acceptable standards.
Owners are responsible for the repair and maintenance of their property. Where owners cannot agree a course of action to carry out works to the common parts of the building they can contact the Council for advice and assistance.
In instances where all owners or some owners do not agree to participate in the repair project or maintenance regime, the Council can take enforcement action under the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006. Under this legislation local authorities have statutory powers which they can use to facilitate or execute works in relation to common repairs.
Owners and landlords of common properties which have been identified as requiring necessary repairs to help bring the property back up to a reasonable standard.
Please note: If any enforcement action is taken, the offer of any financial assistance will be immediately withdrawn.
Please see types of Statutory Action below:
The Council may serve Work notices under the terms of Section 30 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 where it considers a property to be substandard and the owners are failing to address issues of disrepair on a voluntary basis.
After a works notice is issued by the Council and the timescales set out in the Notice are not complied with, the Council may carry out the works in default or empower other parties such as the factor or agent to carry out the works on the owners behalf.
In such circumstances, the Council will pay the cost of the shares of those owners who are unwilling or unable to participate and subsequently pursue these owners for recovery of their full share of the costs plus an additional charge of 15% to cover all legal, professional and administrative expenses on completion of the works.
Where the majority of owners within a property in common ownership agree to undertake common repair works, the Council may pay the missing shares of the minority who are unwilling or unable to participate. This will only be when it is considered appropriate and the costs are above £300 per property.
For properties in common ownership and in need of maintenance, the Council may request that owners put a maintenance plan in place and ask them to contribute a regular amount into a maintenance account. Where owners fail to do this on a voluntary basis, the Council can serve Maintenance Orders and appoint an agent to oversee the implementation of a Maintenance plan.
If a property is considered to be Below Tolerable Standard, the Local Authority may make a Closing Order prohibiting the use of the house for human habitation. A closing order shall take effect from such date as specified in the order, not being less than 28 days from the date on which it comes into operation. Once the Closing Order comes into effect, it is an effect; it is an offence for anyone to live in the property.
For further information on what is considered to be a Tolerable Standard Failure.
Under Section 1 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 a local authority may by order designate any locality in its area as a housing renewal area (HRA) if it considers:
a) that a significant number of the houses in the locality are sub-standard (more than fifty per cent of the houses are sub-standard; or less than fifty per cent are substandard but there is clear evidence to demonstrate that these number are increasing) or
b) that the appearance or state of repair of any houses in the locality is adversely affecting the amenity of that locality.
A house is sub-standard as defined under Section 68(i) of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006 if it -
(i) deteriorate rapidly into a state of serious disrepair, or (ii) damage any other premises.
Section 28 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014 requires Scottish Ministers to make regulations for a scheme that would enable local authorities to apply to Scottish Ministers for additional discretionary powers to target enforcement in areas subject to poor housing conditions in the private rented sector. Such areas would be designated as Enhanced Enforcement Areas (EEAs).
The aim of the Regulations is to enable local authorities to tackle those persistent and severe problems in the private rented sector that have resisted attempts to solve them using existing powers as described above. The desired outcomes are that areas that are blighted by these problems are improved for both private rented sector tenants and the wider community. The regulations will provide additional discretionary powers for local authorities to tackle poor conditions in the Private Rented Sector. They would be used to target a discrete area that is characterised by an overprovision of overcrowded private rented accommodation that is of a poor environmental standard and where there is a prevalence of antisocial behaviour.
The Scottish Government identified a number of potentially positive impacts the legislative changes may have. For example, tackling antisocial behaviour and improving standards within the EEA will benefit all those within the EEA, particularly some equalities groups such as young people and ethnic minorities.
With the new regulations now available, Glasgow City Council will consider the designation of Enhanced Enforcement Areas, once existing legislative powers have been unsuccessful.
For further information on EEA's please refer to Scottish Government website.
If you require further information or advice on any of the above please contact Housing and Regeneration Services (Private Sector).