Rented homes come under the spotlight

Colin Campbell, chairman of South Tyneside Landlords Association.
Colin Campbell, chairman of South Tyneside Landlords Association.

A new strategy to improve privately-rented properties in South Tyneside is to be developed.

South Tyneside Council is setting up a scrutiny commission to examine the role of the private rented sector in meeting the borough’s housing needs.

I’d be delighted to be invited

Colin Campbell

New figures reveal there are 6,700 privately rented properties in the borough, making up 10 per cent of all housing stock.

But that figure is growing, and tomorrow the council’s Place Select Committee will meet to establish a commission.

It will hear the views of people who work in and with the private rented sector, including landlords.

Landord Colin Campbell, chairman of the South Tyneside Landlords’ Association, said he would happily contribute to the commission.

He said: “I’d be delighted to be invited to address the commission or for the commission members to come to one of the association’s meetings.

“In the past when they have developed commissions on housing we have not been invited to contribute.

“It has been Shelter, South Tyneside Homes and various charities involved, but not the landlords.”

Councillor Nancy Maxwell, committee chairman, said: “The majority of landlords in South Tyneside are reputable, responsible and provide well-maintained, safe homes for their tenants.

“Unfortunately, there is a small minority who do not, and this can have a detrimental impact on the wider community.

“As this sector grows it is important to ensure it plays a positive part in our overall housing strategy, and to consider what more the council can do to help improve standards.”