Late last year, he ‘talked out’ a plan to outlaw ‘revenge’ evictions by private landlords on tenants who – for example – want repairs on the properties they are renting.
Before that, he called for disabled people with jobs to be paid less than the minimum wage. He has also claimed sex education increases teen pregnancy (in fact, research suggests it reduces the phenomenon).
Now he has spoken against another proposal, this time for the law to be updated to require homes under a certain rent limit to be fit for human habitation.
A proposed law that would require landlords to make homes fit for human habitation would be an unnecessary regulatory burden, a Conservative MP has argued.
Philip Davies, who derives an income from renting out property, said the new bill proposed by a Labour MP would put “a huge burden on landlords”.
He said MPs were acting “as if [landlords] have nothing else to do but wade through legislation generated by this house.
“My contention would be … I don’t think this particular bill is necessary to achieve what I would like to see.”
The Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill was introduced by Labour MP Karen Buck and is on its second reading.
The Bill updates a law introduced in the 19th century that requires homes under a certain rent limit to be “fit for human habitation”.
That rent limit has not been updated since 1957, however, and the rule currently applies to all properties with an annual rent of below £80 in London and £52 elsewhere.
The weekly average weekly rent in London is currently £362 and practically zero properties currently fall under the legislation.
“There has been some surprise since I introduced this bill that homes could be let that were not fit for human habitation, but extraordinarily, this is in the year 2015, the case,” she told MPs.
Research by the charity Citizens Advice published in May found that tenants in the private sector spend £5.6bn in rent every year to live in homes that can make them sick or kill them.
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