Leeds Acorn has spoken out on the perceived plethora of “rogue landlords” urging the council to expand its city licensing scheme.
The group claimed that many tenants are living with leaks in their ceilings, mould and faulty electrics, adding that problems could worsen due to the rising cost of living.
Mick Haworth, secretary of Leeds Acorn, told the BBC: “You need a licence to drive a car or sell alcohol, you need a licence to house dogs in a kennel.
“I think it’s reasonable that you would need a licence to house people.”
He added that he speaks to tenants daily about unsafe housing, adding: “What makes it worse is that they are often paying up to half of their income on these properties with no real alternative.”
In one case study, Euan Polson repeatedly asked for his roof to be fixed in a previous home, as rainwater leaked into the hallways.
It apparently wasn’t fixed for his entire year-long tenancy, while the landlord then had the audacity of trying to charge him for carpet damage when he left.
The city’s licensing scheme was introduced in 2019, covering the Harehills and Beeston regions.
The scheme costs landlords £825 per property.